What is Happening in Brazil Right Now: Impeachment Process Against Dilma Rousseff
Brazil's Democracy is in Danger
April 19th, 2016
Yesterday, 17th of April, a vote was held in the Chamber of Deputies in favor of beginning the process of impeachment against Dilma Rousseff, the first female president in Brazil's history. The next step will be a Senate vote, on the 11th of May.
In sequence of an unstable economy and a corruption scandal – where, however, Dilma Rousseff or anyone from her party were involved – a feeling of disappointment is rising among Brazilian people, now turning to the opposition – the vice-president Michel Temer and his right-wing party (PMDB-SP).
This impeachment process can really damage Brazil's young democracy, which was only re-established in 1985, after two decades of military dictatorship. The PMDB-SP party, with a rising recentpopularity, is constituted by proved corrupt, reactionary, evangelical, militarist and assumed fascist politicians.
Some political analysts, like Pedro Arruda, from the Pontifical Catholic University in São Paulo, already declared that what is happening, “is just a pretext to take down a president who was elected by 54 million people. She doesn't have foreign bank accounts, and she hasn't been accused of corruption, unlike those who are trying to impeach her.”
Dilma Rousseff is being charged for “disregarding the federal budget”, “administrative misconduct” and suspected acts of corruption in Petrobras, which is a subject under investigation by the Federal Police, in a process called “Operation Car Wash”. Anyhow, it is important to say that this accusations, as well as the rising popularity of the opposition party, are a product of Brazil's media. These media are concentrated in the hands of a few conglomerates owned by a wealthy elite, with historic allegiances to right-wing parties. Their influence is now being assumed by distorting and manipulating the news coverage since the political crisis started with the results from the Operation Car Wash.
Bia Barbosa, a journalist and coordinator of the Brasilia-based National Forum for the Democratization of Communication (FNDC), explained to the English Newspaper The Independent: “The media has used the power of images and words to build a narrative designed to influence public opinion. What we are suffering, on a daily basis, is an absence of parity in the press and this is threatening our country’s fragile hold on democracy”.
On the 11th of April, if 41 senators (from a total of 81) vote for the impeachment, the process will be formally established. In that case, Dilma will cease her tasks while the investigations are going (to a total of 180 days), and meanwhile, the vice-president Michel Temer can assume the presidency of Brazil.