The leftist Worker’s Party (PT) was defeated in the second round of Brazil’s presidential election. However, it won the biggest number of seats in the Chamber of Deputies: 56 of the 513 representatives.
The party has vowed a staunch opposition to far-right President Jair Bolsonaro, but in a parliament fragmented among 30 parties, it needs allies.
CGTN’s Paulo Cabral reports from Sao Paulo.
“Our main task at this stage of Brazil’s political life is to defend democracy and the political, social and economic rights of the population,” Vice President of the Worker’s Party Luiz Dulci said.
“This goes much beyond the PT. To defend democracy we need to form a very wide front and not only in the left wing but also with centrist forces who may want to join.”
Some of Bolsonaro’s radical views could also run into opposition in sectors of center and even center-right parties, like Brazil’s Social Democratic Party (PSDB).
Former Sao Paulo governor Alberto Goldman is one of the party’s most vocal critics of Bolsonaro. Goldman said a split in the PSDB cannot be ruled out.
“I think there is already a split in practice, that has just not been formalized,” he said. “Many political figures of our party have already been announcing their support for the government, but for now in a personal capacity. The party itself doesn’t have a clear path yet.”
Opposition to Bolsonaro will not be limited to political parties. Leftist social and activist movements are often antagonized by the former army captain, and have promised to resist the new administration.
The Landless Workers Movement is one of them. It’s a militant group that occupies private and unused farmland for distribution to landless peasants. During the campaign, Bolsonaro said he would seek legislation to deem such occupations terrorism. He also vowed to oppose all kinds of activism in Brazil.
“This is a neo-fascist government which is opposing and trying to criminalize the left wing and the popular activist movements,” Gilmar Mauro, National Coordinator of the Landless Workers Movement said. “I have no doubt there will be resistance.”