The leftist candidate has an advantage over the outgoing president. The polls give it a winner, but the gap between the two candidates is reduced: 4-5 points
The Brazil to the showdown. Sunday 30th October the first economy in South America (220 million inhabitants and 150 million voters) elects the president: the outgoing will be re-elected Jair Bolsonaro or the former trade unionist will triumph Lula, former president from 2003 to 2011? The latter is ahead in the polls, but the small margin (4-5 points, taking an average of recent surveys) does not leave him calm, especially remembering what happened in the first round of 2 October, when the sovereign president denied the forecasts that gave him back by 15 points with a possible victory for Lula in the first round, arriving instead at 43% of the votes (7 points more than the 36% attributed by the polls). Lula, 77 years old last Thursday and now physically tried by the age and by the almost 2 years spent in prison for the sentence (later revoked) for corruption, is always the favorite, but in a certain sense his election would make him a case unique in the world: of very humble origins, he has not completed his studies and has already been at the top of his country for 8 years, following the democratic rules. Unlike other similar leaders, he points out Globo, like Nelson Mandelawho was a graduate, or like Lech Walesa, who had a resume at Lula, but he was wrecked on the second attempt with 1% of the votes.
Elections Brazil 2022: Lula president of the people, but also of the economists
Lula was and is a candidate to be the president of the people, the one who reduced extreme poverty in Brazil from 18.5% to 5%, a figure that instead rose to 9.5% under Bolsonaro: today 33 million Brazilians have difficulty in having access to food, and the Country recently returned to the UN Hunger Map. But that’s not the only reason why a return of the leader of the Partido dos Trabalhadores it would be preferable, even for economists and financial markets, who in fact “cheer” for him, to the point that in the event of victory his government could be almost more technical than political. More economists than former barricading trade unionists, so to speak, and the rest of the choices in the electoral campaign have already gone in this direction. Lula, in fact, managed to achieve what the Italian center-left lacked: a field that was more than wide, very wide, with 9 parties that supported him in the first round (record for a Brazilian presidential election), to which he added for the ballot the support of the two centrists defeated on 2 October, Simone Tebet And Ciro Gomes. They will bring about 5-6%, which could prove decisive and which in fact creates a coalition of “national unity”, with the aim of ousting the sovereign Bolsonaro, accused of any wickedness during the pandemic but who in reality the duel with Lula he also loses it from the point of view of economic numbers.
With record-breaking Lula GDP, Bolsonaro is holding on to public debt
In fact, in the Lula years, Brazil grew by 6-7%, driven by commodities and household consumption, and also resisting the crash of Lehman Brothers, while with Bolsonaro during the pandemic GDP fell by 4%, reaching its maximum growth (+ 4.7%) at the beginning of this year, only to then slow down again. The latest official data, that of the second quarter of 2022, speaks of a growth of 2.6%. The forecast for the end of the year according to the IMF is 2.8%, less than the global average (3.2%), Italy (3.2%) and the other former emerging countries, with the exception of Russia, which will grow in an average of 3.7% also in 2023, when Brazil will slow down to 1%. China will rise to 4.4% next year, while India will grow by more than 6%.
Alarm also for the unemployment, which at the end of 2022 will touch 10%: Lula had brought it to 7.8% in 2010, with Bolsonaro, on the other hand, Brazil records the second worst figure in the whole of Latin America, better than only 11% than Colombia. It’s a little better for theinflationwhich Bolsonaro is holding at around 9%, a figure in line with the South American area, even if with Lula it had fallen below 6%.
However, the outgoing president is accused of “doping” the economy to cover the gaps and garner consensus: this is why the gas yes, it is at an all-time low, but thanks to conspicuous public interventions, and the subsidy Auxilio Brasil, il Brazilian citizenship income, has been raised to unprecedented figures to buffer the social emergency after the pandemic. But not even those who perceive it trust it, so much so that among those who receive aid, the favorite is however Lula.
Bolsonaro will be able to count on governors and a (relative) majority in Congress
The economy, for those few positive signs that emerge, is in fact making a “hen’s flight”, according to the expression used in an editorial in the Folha de Sao Paulo, signed by the economist Nelson Barbosa. The apparent thrust of the last few months, however, as seen not even extraordinary, will not hold up. It’s a flash in the pan that will quickly lead to stagnation: “Some forecasts speak of growth of just 0.6% in 2023, therefore a figure lower than the population growth (0.7%)”. So further impoverishment per capita, and this Brazil, which is ending this electoral rush exhausted by tensions and violence, cannot afford it.
In the event, still possible, of a re-election of Bolsonaro, things could even precipitate, but even if Lula wins, her task will not be easy. Many Brazilians, although preferring him to the opponent, do not forgive him for involvement (never fully clarified, the process must be redone) in the scandal Wash Jatoand in any case his government will be called to many compromise solutions, given that, even in the event of defeat, Bolsonaro will be able to count on many governors in key states (in Rio his candidate has already been re-elected, in Sao Paulo the right is very favorite in the second round) and his Liberal Party will in any case, after the results of 2 October, the largest group in the Federal Congressboth at Room (99 deputies against the 68 of the PT of Lula) that al Senate (13 versus 9). The game is wide open and it will be a battle even after the vote.