Political Victory for Temer During Anxious Times for Brazil

President Michel Temer of Brazil gives a speech in Brasília, December 13
President Michel Temer of Brazil gives a speech in Brasília, December 13 (Palácio do Planalto/Marcos Corrêa)

Brazil’s president, Michel Temer, scored a major political victory last week when Congress passed a constitutional amendment that limits public spending for the next twenty years.

This was no small feat, given that 63 percent of Brazilians, according to one recent poll, want Temer out. Read more

Rousseff’s Future Uncertain After PMDB Defection

Brazilian president Dilma Rousseff answers questions from reporters in Brasília, March 11
Brazilian president Dilma Rousseff answers questions from reporters in Brasília, March 11 (Blog do Planalto/Roberto Stuckert Filho)

The Brazilian Democratic Movement Party (PMDB) pulled out of the Latin American country’s ruling coalition this week, forcing President Dilma Rousseff to scramble for new allies ahead of an impeachment vote that could be called as early as mid-April.

The president would need 172 abstentions or votes in her favor in the lower chamber of Congress to survive an impeachment motion.

Vem Pra Rua, a civil society group, estimates that currently only 119 lawmakers are firmly on Rousseff’s side. Another 128 are undecided. Many of them are PMDB deputies.

The impeachment proceedings are the public face of what is really a political struggle to push Rousseff out. The formal case against the president rest on the allegation that she used an accounting trick to disguise a budget deficit in 2014, the year of her reelection — hardly the sort of offensive that would seem to require her ouster when there has been plenty of actual abuse of power to go around. Read more