By Eric Vandenbroeck and co-workers

Brazil Today

In the lead-up to the vote, Bolsonaro – with corruption allegations and dimming approval ratings – spread false rumors that Brazil’s electronic voting system was susceptible to fraud. Protests broke out months before the first vote was cast and continued after Bolsonaro was defeated. Bolsonaro supporters erected roadblocks along Brazil’s highways and used hashtags like #BrazilianSpring, coined by former Trump strategist Steve Bannon, to rally opposition to Lula’s victory.

Bolsonaro has not conceded defeat since the election results were announced. Instead, a coalition led by his allies filed a quickly dismissed complaint to Brazil’s Superior Electoral Court in an attempt to invalidate ballots processed in the electronic voting machines. Then in December, protesters tried to invade the federal police headquarters in Brasilia after the electoral court certified Lula’s victory earlier in the day.

The threat of violence intensified as Lula prepared to be sworn in on 1 January, with Bolsonaro supporters setting up camps near army barracks to push for a military coup. An alleged bomb plot was also thwarted. The Sunday attack on Brazil’s government buildings came one week after Lula’s inauguration. On Thursday, Lula told reporters that he wondered whether the rioters had help from within the government.

A group of 46 lawmakers in the United States House of Representatives has called on the administration of President Joe Biden to revoke any US visa held by former President Jair Bolsonaro in the wake of Sunday’s attack on Brazil’s capital.

The unlawful and violent attack on January 8 against Brazilian government institutions was built upon months of pre- and post-election fabrications by Mr Bolsonaro and his allies,” the lawmakers said in the letter.

similar letter was sent by the Senate majority whip, Richard Durbin, who announced plans to introduce legislation that would make those who undermine a free and fair democratic election or peaceful democratic transfer of power overseas ineligible for a US visa. Durbin will introduce the legislation when the Senate is back in session.



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