14/06/2017 12:12

(Foto: L Marques/AGPT)

All the initiatives to protect, gain time and preserve the politicians now in office in Brazil, in the present conditions of political, economic and institutional crisis, reveal the gravity of the situation. President Michel Temer has no chance of remaining in office, with 95% of the population disapproving his administration and a huge majority in favor of direct elections¹. Even with audio and video tapes showing promiscuous relations between the President and the JBS corporation, the institutions that formally compose this beleaguered democracy’s executive, legislative and judicial branches only seem to sink deeper into the quagmire.

The Higher Electoral Court’s verdict that found the Dilma-Temer ticket innocent of electoral crimes was a deliberate orchestration by the power elite to keep the Temer government afloat, as it plays all its cards in the National Congress to keep the representatives from voting to open impeachment proceedings, in response to many charges against him raised by street demonstrations and formally filed by political parties. That armor keeps the government alive and allows it to continue to push unpopular reforms through Congress, as its survival works in tandem with the ongoing crisis and attacks on people’s rights. So much so, that the Social Security Reform and the Labor Reform are still moving forward on the Congressional agenda.

Demonstration in Brasília for Direct Elections Now. (Photo: Marcello Casal Jr/ABr)

A series of events shed light on how Temer and most of his ministers and party allies have participated in countless irregular campaign funding schemes and bribes. We are now at a point where the government does not fall from the weight of its own acts against the country nor does the Republic’s judicial system play the role it should during a crisis like this, since the higher courts are moving away from the will of the people and resort to endless operational proselytism. In the shadow of the unclothed king and his inner circle, and despite the sea of mud, they seem to take delight in their flight forward.

In response to this spirit of complacency among the élite, any solution to the crisis – whose impacts are clearly felt by the majority of Brazilian society and affect neighboring countries as well – will fundamentally depend on the people’s participation in the streets and at the ballot box. The ballot box indeed must be a short-term solution, to achieve a political transition able to overcome the crisis with legitimacy. In our opinion, this will only be possible with “Direct Elections Now”.

The streets must issue a clear call to reestablish a social pact that goes beyond today’s degraded political system. This will be one of the conditions for Brazilian civil society to rebuild a political environment able to breath and thoroughly discuss alternatives to the current development model. That call is also needed to block the reform bills now in Congress and to revoke constitutional amendments recently approved that threaten our national sovereignty.

Launching of the Broad Front for Direct Elections Now (Photo: Reprod.)

This explains why FASE joined 50 other organizations to create the Broad Front for Direct Elections Now, and why FASE is for Fora Temer (Temer Out), against the neoliberal reforms and for Direct Elections Now, with all our rights left intact. We support and work decisively to reestablish conditions for discussions on the country’s future and to open room for a public agenda on alternatives to the current economic and political development model. We are also against any kind of indirect elections by members of this Congress whose majority has been politically demoralized.

We are hopeful that all the energy in the streets will not be limited, but rather go beyond a mere debate on electoral alternatives in 2018. We support popular demonstrations including, for example, social movements, artists, intellectuals, jurists, students, youth, the religious, political parties, labor movements, women, black people, LGBTs and environmentalists that above all demonstrate the people’s will to set their country’s course.

We are against any reduction of the political struggle to the interests of two groups: on the one hand those who seek to block investigations and keep Temer in office and, on the other, the “market forces” that, with or without Temer, are bent on further reductions of the rights of working women and men while subjugating the courts as well – to go on dominating the political-party system as they have for decades. That is why FASE joins with those who call for society to mobilize and take to the streets and squares with the banners Fora Temer!, Direct Elections Now! and Not One Right Less!


[1] Access that poll here.