Former President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva claimed victory over his right-wing rival Jair Bolsonaro in a closely contested second round of Brazil’s elections on Sunday. With over 99% of the districts reporting their final results, Lula’s victory was “mathematically defined” according to the electoral authority of the country.
Polling stations across the country closed at 5 p.m. local time (8 p.m. GMT). Early results showed Bolsonaro in the lead, but just like in the first round of voting, his lead eventually narrowed as more votes from da Silva’s strongholds were counted.
On October 2, da Silva, who served as president from 2003 to 2010, received over 48% of the vote, which was not enough to claim an immediate victory in the first round.
Lula da Silva, who represents the Workers’ Party of Brazil, has focused his campaign on overcoming social inequalities and reducing poverty. Among the measures he proposes are raising taxes on the wealthy, expanding the social safety net and raising the minimum wage.
Bolsonaro’s campaign slogan has been “God, family, homeland and freedom”. His vision for Brazil’s future includes privatizing the country’s state-owned oil company, opening up the Amazon region to more mining, and relaxing gun regulations.
The incumbent has repeatedly warned during his campaign that he will contest the results if he loses by a small margin, questioning the reliability of Brazil’s electronic voting system.
As the showdown approached, the rivals repeatedly traded insults at debates and campaign events.
During a debate on October 17, Lula called Bolsonaro a “little dictator” and is committed to defending freedom and democracy. Holder fired back, calling out Lula “a national embarrassment” due to the corruption scandals that took place when Lula’s Workers’ Party (PT) was in power between 2003 and 2016.
Lula, who ruled Brazil from 2003 to 2010, was barred from running for president in 2018 due to a corruption conviction that was later overturned.
You can share this story on social media: