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Weekly Report - 12 August 2021 (WR-21-32)

BRAZIL: Defeat for Bolsonaro as electoral reform rejected

A military parade in Brasília on 10 August, to which President Jair Bolsonaro publicly invited judicial leaders and lawmakers a day beforehand, ended up being an underwhelming affair, with only a smattering of hardcore supporters turning out to watch the procession of vehicles. But it is indicative of Bolsonaro’s increasingly authoritarian tendencies that the unusual military parade even took place, and that many lawmakers decried it as an attempt by the president to intimidate congress ahead of a vote on an electoral reform that he backed. The proposal to introduce paper ballots to the electronic voting system was overturned by the chamber of deputies but this is unlikely to put an end to ongoing institutional tensions, which are fomented by Bolsonaro’s attacks on Brazil’s voting system and his threats that next year’s presidential elections might be cancelled.   

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