A survey carried out with data from the registration of candidates in the Electoral Court showed that since the self-declaration of race began in 2014, this is the year with the highest number of black candidates (black and brown) participating in the electoral process.
In 2022, 49.49% of people seeking political office declared themselves to be black, an increase of 2.95% compared to 2018. However, the national scenario is not repeated in the state of Rio de Janeiro.
According to the website of the Superior Electoral Court (TSE), Rio de Janeiro registered a total of 2,726 candidacies for the general elections that take place in October. In all, 1,268 are black people, representing 46.52% of the candidacies, and 1,381 are white people, the same as 50.66%.
For the president of the Board of Trustees of the Brazilian Institute of Social and Economic Analysis (Ibase) and member of the Black Coalition for Rights, Wania Sant’Anna, Rio de Janeiro is advancing, even if at a slower pace.
“It is important to say that the state of Rio de Janeiro has always launched and elected black men and women who are also competitive in the polls – to council positions, to Alerj [Assembleia Legislativa do Estado do Rio de Janeiro] and the Chamber of Deputies. Benedita da Silva, Jurema Batista, Carlos Alberto Caó Oliveira, Edmilson Valentim, Edson Santos, Marcelo Dias. And many others who were not elected, but showed a strong response at the polls, as is the case of Lélia Gonzalez, for example”, comments the historian.
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In Wania’s opinion, remembering the path taken by all these political leaders serves as an inspiration for black youth to participate more in the electoral process by running for public office. However, according to the activist, it is essential that political parties also assume their responsibility when presenting a framework of representative candidacies for Brazilian society.
“Political parties need to do their part in strengthening black activists who are focused on fighting racism, discrimination and eradicating racial inequalities in Brazil. The number, for many, is surprising, but the black population is the majority in the country, isn’t it? So, it makes sense that this percentage is at this level. The question that arises, given this profile, is what the results of the polls will be”, he ponders.
women in politics
When it comes to the participation of women in politics, the numbers for the state of Rio de Janeiro are very close to the national one, which shows 67% of male candidates and 33% of female candidates.
In Rio, according to TSE data, 68%, that is, 1,856 of the names registered to participate in the general elections are men and 32%, that is, 870, are women.
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Compared to 2018, there was a 1% increase in female participation. This year, as in 2018, black women are in greater numbers than white women in the state of Rio. In all, 449 black candidates presented registration in the electoral justice, women who declared themselves white had 392 registrations.
However, there was a 28.47% reduction in the number of white women and 24.8% of black women registered as candidates compared to data from four years ago.
Source: BdF Rio de Janeiro
Editing: Mariana Pitasse