The party of Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro on Tuesday, November 22, asked the Superior Electoral Tribunal (TSE) to cancel the votes from more than 280,000 electronic ballot boxes, arguing that “malfunctions” would have prevented his re-election against Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, president from 2003 to 2010.
“We demand the invalidation of the votes from the electronic ballot boxes for which insurmountable malfunctions have been brought to light, and to draw the legal consequences for the results of the second round”on October 30, can we read in the complaint filed by the Liberal Party (PL).
This formation, which obtained the greatest number of deputies and senators at the end of the legislative elections, considers that the ” malfunctionning “ of five urn models “calls into question the transparency of the electoral process”. The PL argues that these dysfunctions were demonstrated in an audit report commissioned by the party.
According to the PL lawyer, more than 280,000 electronic ballot boxes used during the ballot would be of one of these five models in question.
The president of the TSE threatens to dismiss the complaint without analyzing it
The PL affirms that, according to its count, the cancellation of the votes coming from these ballot boxes would give the victory to Jair Bolsonaro with 51.05% of the votes, which is practically the opposite of the official result (50.9% for Lula, 49, 1% for the outgoing president).
TSE President Alexandre de Moraes responded to the complaint by explaining that these ballot box models were used not only in the second round, but also in the first, on October 2. He therefore asks that the complaint “concerns both towers”under penalty of being rejected without being analyzed.
But a cancellation of part of the votes obtained on October 2 would also have an impact on the legislative elections, which took place the same day, with the same ballot boxes. But these gave the PL a great victory. It became the first party in Congress with ninety-nine deputies and fourteen senators. Calling into question the first ballot would therefore be tantamount to jeopardizing the election of many PL parliamentarians.
This appeal has little chance of succeeding, Lula’s victory having already been ratified by the TSE and recognized by the country’s main political leaders and Brazil’s international partners, including the United States. This complaint from the PL aims first of all to show that Jair Boslonaro supports his most radical base, which always demonstrates for him, but without taking any risks and hiding behind his party.
The outgoing president remained silent on Tuesday. Mr. Bolsonaro has practically disappeared from public life for more than three weeks, after the announcement of his defeat against Lula. He only came out of his silence two days later, without explicitly acknowledging his defeat, and evoking the “sense of injustice” of his supporters who demonstrated in front of barracks to demand military intervention.