Update(1600ET): Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro finally spoke publicly for the first time since losing Sunday’s election by a narrow margin.
Many expected, or were hoping, for a concession speech – but that didn’t happen. But it appears the short press event itself was all about the optics of accepting the loss.
He vowed to “follow the Constitution” and called for “order” in the country- and yet didn’t explicitly concede nor did he congratulate declared winner Lula da Silva on victory for the Brazilian presidency, which he’s expected to take over on January 1st. At the same time Bolsonaro didn’t contest the result either.
As one Brazilian national outlet said of the very short speech, “Jair Bolsonaro has not said whether he will accept the election result. He didn’t mention Lula and he didn’t even congratulate the new elected president. It was a subtle pronouncement.”
However, according to breaking news wires…
Brazil’s Chief Of Staff: To Begin Process Of Transition With President Lula
Meanwhile raging protests in some parts of the country continue, though they’ve reportedly waned in intensity and reach since the night prior…
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Incumbent Jair Bolsonaro has still not acknowledged his loss with any public statements over a day after Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva was declared winner of Brazil’s 2022 presidential election held Sunday.
Local media says President Bolsonaro, who is now expected to leave office by January 1st, has not so much as issued any official comments to government ministers. Lula da Silva said in front of a crowd of supporters while celebrating the historic win Sunday night, “Anywhere else in the world, the president who lost would have called me by now and conceded.”
Lula said he remains “part happy, part worried” about the transfer of power, given that “He still hasn’t called, I don’t know if he will and I don’t know if he will concede.”
As we detailed earlier, already many world leaders including those previously considered key global allies of Bolsonaro have called to offer their congratulations to Lula, including Russia’s Vladimir Putin and China’s Xi Jinping, among many others, as well as US President Joe Biden.
CNN notes that the formal process of certifying the vote is underway: “It is Brazil’s Supreme Electoral Court that officially validates election results and communicates them to the Senate, Chamber of Deputies and State Assemblies.”
However that validation process is not completed yet: “A press officer for the Electoral Court told CNN that the vote’s results are already considered validated, since the court’s declaration of the outcome on Sunday. A court session at a later point will formally confirm the win, but no date has been set for it yet, he said,” according to the CNN report.
Protests by Bolsonaro supporters against the election results – which saw Lula receive 50.9% to Bolsonaro’s 49.10% of the vote – have popped up reportedly in more than 100 locations.
Bolsonaro supporters are claiming the election was “stolen”…
BBC reports Tuesday morning, “Lorry drivers in Brazil loyal to President Jair Bolsonaro have blocked roads across the country, after his poll defeat to leftist rival Lula.” The report describes, “Blockages were reported in all but two states, causing considerable disruption and affecting food supply chains.” And more:
By Monday night, the federal highway police reported 342 such incidents, with the biggest protests going on in the country’s south. Some of the blockages were later cleared by police.
…Supreme Court judge Alexandre de Moraes on Monday ordered the police to disperse the roadblocks immediately. He warned that all those still blocking the roads on Tuesday would be each fined 100,000 Brazilian reals (£16,700: $19,300) per hour.
Bolsonaro has recently expressed concern over the potential for the country’s voting machines to be manipulated or tampered with, something that his political opponents have dismissed as “Trump-style” election denial rhetoric.
Into Tuesday morning, nothing has been posted to Bolsonaro’s official social media accounts since the night before Sunday’s vote.
His last tweet came shortly before midnight on the eve of the election. He quoted from the Bible, the book of Ephesians, which says “Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil…”. Some are taking this as a sign he could be readying to not go down without a political fight contesting the election results.
The New York Times is meanwhile reporting that President Bolsonaro is expected to give a speech on Tuesday, but it’s unclear when or precisely what he will say.