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Majority of Brazilians back snap elections

Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff gestures during a meeting with the Organization of American States (OAS) Secretary General, Luis Almagro (not depicted) at Planalto Palace in Brasilia, on April 15, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / EVARISTO SA

Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff gestures during a meeting with the Organization of American States (OAS) Secretary General, Luis Almagro (not depicted) at Planalto Palace in Brasilia, on April 15, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / EVARISTO SA

Six out of 10 Brazilians want snap elections to resolve the country’s political crisis in which leftist President Dilma Rousseff faces impeachment, a poll released Tuesday said.

Rousseff, who is accused of illegally manipulating government accounts, could be suspended from office as early as mid-May. She would be replaced by her chief opponent, Vice President Michel Temer, whom she has accused of mounting a constitutional coup.

The IBOPE poll found that 62 percent of Brazilians want both Rousseff and Temer to stand down and for new elections to be held.

The option is currently not on the cards and would require Congress to pass a constitutional amendment, but the idea has gathered steam amid public disgust at the corruption and political infighting that has paralyzed the government.

Only 25 percent want Rousseff to remain in power, but a mere eight percent believe a Temer government would resolve the crisis, the poll found.

The next scheduled elections are in 2018.

According to the poll, the current leaders are environmentalist Marina Silva with 39 percent, followed by Aecio Neves, the rightwing opponent of Rousseff in her 2014 reelection, who would currently get 32 percent.

Close behind was Rousseff’s predecessor and chief mentor, Luis Inacio Lula da Silva, with 31 percent.

Jair Bolsonaro, a far right member of Congress who has praised Brazil’s former military dictatorship and torture of opponents in the 1970s, including a young Rousseff, saw his polling number rise to a personal high of 11 percent.



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