Despite signaling some difficulties for the Lula government in the Senate, the score of 49 votes to 32 that marked the re-election of Rodrigo Pacheco (PSD-MG) as president of the House reduces the caliber of the institutional crisis created and fed by former president Jair Bolsonaro (PL) and its allies. This was the point that brought together different comments, interviews and backstage speeches that marked the moments following the election on Wednesday night (1st).
The score is not enough to neutralize the strident Bolsonarist opposition, but the trend is that now the attacks directed at the Federal Supreme Court (STF) stumble on the brake imposed by the defeat of the senator and former minister of Bolsonaro Rogério Marinho (PL-RN).
“The result confirms the most important thing: governance, the great leadership that President Lula has in the country today and Pacheco’s ability to express the idea of a house with weighting, with balance, a house that fights extremism”, summarized Flávio Dino (PSB-MA), who took a temporary leave of absence from the position of Minister of Justice to take office as a senator and participate in the election of the board of directors of the House.
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“We were confident in this victory and, in our opinion, it helps to consolidate the democratic institutional environment in the Senate and creates an environment for dialogue, including with sectors of the opposition, those defeated (in the election), so that we can move forward now on priority projects ”, waved the deputy and minister of Institutional Relations of the government, Alexandre Padilha (PT-SP).
The gravitational action of a group of Bolsonarist parliamentarians who are trying to dispute power in the Senate to block the Lula government’s plans in the House and enforce Bolsonaro’s legacy was what drew the most attention in the dispute that led to Pacheco’s reappointment.
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The group, which tends to continue making noise, is identified with guidelines that target members of the Supreme Court. This is the case of the impeachment of Minister Alexandre de Moraes and the so-called “CPI da Lava Toga”, an agenda that emerged in recent years as a response to what Bolsonaristas call the “judicial activism” of characters from the higher courts.
“That’s why Pacheco’s relatively quiet victory eased the crisis that was brewing if Marinho was victorious. With Pacheco reappointed, the ‘third round’ (electoral) was completely emptied. It was another victory against Bolsonarism with coup expectations. Marinho’s agenda would maintain the confrontation with the Lula government and, in addition, could radicalize the confrontations with the STF, in particular with Moraes”, essays the political analyst Marcos Verlaine, from the Inter-Union Department of Parliamentary Advisory (Diap).
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Although he belongs to the liberal right-wing camp and is not a classic supporter of Lula, Pacheco has a more moderate profile, which is why, throughout the race, he concentrated his efforts on presenting himself as the candidate for institutional dialogue. It was also under this symbol that the dispute went beyond the limits of Congress and gained the spotlight on social networks, a space where traditionally the internal elections of the Legislature do not have so much audience. “Many voted for Marinho due to pressure from the electoral base of Bolsonarist states, those in the North and South regions. Now, there will be detensioning”, reinforces Verlaine.
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Although the Senate election re-edited the climate of the dispute that took place in 2022 between Lula (PT) and Jair Bolsonaro (PL), Pacheco was not always on the side of the current President of the Republic. In 2020, the senator was elected to command the House with the support of the former captain, then chief executive.
Although in his first term at the head of the Senate he had less alignment with Bolsonaro than had the mayor, Arthur Lira (PP-AL), the congressman from Minas Gerais behaved as an ally of the last government in different agendas, especially in the economic agenda, marked by a series of neoliberal and unpopular measures. He also voted for the impeachment of Dilma Rousseff (PT), in 2016, when he was a federal deputy.
Now, with the scenario that the Senate has at the beginning of the third Lula administration, Pacheco’s name has become the possible victory for the progressive wing, which found itself squeezed between Marinho’s extreme right candidacy and Pacheco’s favoritism. “I understand that his reappointment represents the victory of those who are against hatred and want a policy of national conciliation”, he told the Brazil in Fact senator Paulo Paim (PT-RS), when mentioning the importance of interrupting the crisis between the Powers.
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For the petista, Pacheco’s victory becomes even more relevant in the context of the post-January 8 attacks, which in recent weeks has mobilized the institutional apparatus of the three Powers in reaction to the attacks.
“It was President Lula himself who pointed this way. He advanced to a broad front (in the election), inviting parties that until last year were not close to our point of view on matters of the country. But, at this moment, just like the election of Lira in the Chamber, it was a very big seam that the parties made in the Senate. It is clear that the government, in the figure of President Lula, set an example of the importance of sweeping away hate politics and curbing this crisis”, concludes Paim.
Editing: Vivian Virissimo
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