The world’s fifth largest nation has concluded its voting today and re-elected its sitting president. Brazil’s Dilma Rousseff will get a second term as president after winning more than 50 percent of the votes in today’s election. Running as a member of the left-leaning Worker’s Party, her popular social service measures helped gain her the support of the country’s large poor population. While her opponent had the backing of middle- and upper-class citizens and businesses, that did not supply enough of the electorate to result in an upset win.
Brazil’s economy is going through a recession and the Party of Brazilian Social Democracy ran a campaign about boosting the economy. Accusations that their candidate, Aecio Neves, was intending to cut social programs like the bolsa familia, a form of welfare, resonated with the public and helped sink his campaign. That highlights just how much of this election fell along economic lines, with the majority being at or below the poverty line and a small minority being considered middle- or upper-class.
Nevertheless, the polls were close going into election day. The Worker’s Party, who has had a member as president for the last 11 years, was obviously worried going into the voting period. Their opponents were as well as a centrist candidate seemed to gain ground and represent yet another challenge for Neves’ campaign. But with 98 percent of the ballots counted, the election has been declared for Dilma Rousseff, who will get a second presidential term.
By Lydia Bradbury