Opinion – Vinicius Torres Freire: In the campaign where nothing has changed, inhumanity defeats Bolsonaro


No, we will not know of a possible early defeat of Jair Bolsonaro (PL) until Sunday. It is difficult for the polls on the eve, on Saturday, to indicate a larger majority for Lula da Silva (PT) in the first round, as the undecided electorate is residual. Abstention swells can change the game.

The most important result of Datafolha is that the vote for Lula and Bolsonaro has not changed during the official election campaign, since mid-August. The voting of the two, both in the first and in a possible second round, is also the same.

The electoral fraud, extra social benefits, the gasoline dispute, the propaganda, none of this had any effect. The undecided rate was historic and precociously low, in a plebiscitary election, in a campaign even more empty of ideas than usual. The candidacy trick against the “system” stopped working, as did the pharisaic demagoguery with corruption.

In short, so far, at least, this election has been about something else, a sentiment that has barely changed since people paid attention to the candidates.

In the campaign preliminaries, starting in May, Bolsonaro even advanced in almost all categories of voters. It gained points especially among evangelicals, younger voters (up to 34 years old), with higher education and in the South region. Lula beat Bolsonaro by 48% to 27% in May, by 47% to 32% in August and now has 48% against 34%.

Overall, as is well known, Bolsonaro loses because of the poorest and women. Among women, the majority in the electorate, Lula has 50%, Bolsonaro 29%. Among voters with a family income of less than two minimum wages, they lose from 57% to 26%. It is quite likely that he is losing because of his repulsive inhumanity.

The cataclysm of misery of 2021 was remarkable. It was a year of great increase in poverty, lack of jobs, lack of food, pests that raged even more in the void left by the end of emergency aid. In some classes, income regressed by more than a decade.

It is a fact that Bolsonaro was never overwhelmingly popular; his government’s disapproval was almost always greater than approval. But the atrocious disregard for the suffering of the sick and hungry, aggravated by his exhibitionist loafing and bad tempers, added offense to social disgrace.

Since April, as reported in these columns, qualitative research has indicated aversion to Bolsonaro’s violent ways, particularly among women, poor and non-white; to the fact of not caring about the price of food and lack of medicine, having fun with motorcycles and jet-skis, being “ill-mannered” and “not giving hope”.

Even in this election that looks like a referendum on the monstrosity, even with the impressive stability of the declarations of vote, it is still risky to say that nothing can change. Since 2013, the country has been in political upheaval, a term that can range from deposing a president to stabbings to street riots. The free-for-all and scoundrels spread; the coup became part of the political landscape as were the rallies of old.

Still, repeat, Lula and Bolsonaro’s vote in a second round has not changed since August: Lula has 58% or 59%, Bolsonaro 42% or 41%.

Four more weeks of campaigning, for a second round of voting, could provide an opportunity for even lower blows. The stability of the vote can be an incentive, therefore, to even more extreme savagery. But the decision of the majority of the electorate seems stable.

You May Also Like

Recommended for you

Immediate Peak