Global Independent Analytics

Brazil’s President Will Seek International Support Against Her Impeachment

The embattled Dilma Rousseff is to make an appeal at the U.N. in New York City on Friday

Lisandra Paraguassu and Anthony Boadle for Reuters report: Beleaguered Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff will travel to New York in a bid to rally international support against her impeachment, leaving behind a Cabinet paralyzed by the political crisis as another minister defected on Wednesday. Rousseff aides said the leftist leader will attend a United Nations event on Friday in New York where she will denounce as illegal the attempt to impeach her, a process that could see her forced from office within weeks in a process she calls a "coup d'état without weapons."

Following the unprecedented political turmoil that has struck Brazil and paralyzed its ability to revive the economy from its worst recession in decades in the midst of a massive corruption scandal involving state-run oil firm Petrobras, nine ministers of Rousseff’s cabinet have already resigned. Moreover, the Tourism and Sports Minister has also left his position only four months before Brazil hosts the Olympic Games. Vice President Michel Temer, who is assigned to take the chair if Rousseff goes, has already held a meeting with advisors to study plans for a new government that, aides said, would move quickly to restore economic confidence and growth.

In the light of a possible impeachment coming in three weeks, Rousseff canceled her trip to attend the signing of the Paris Agreement on climate change on Friday to focus on her political survival. Some say that Dilma would try and use her NY visit to defend herself in interviews with international media.

“Rousseff says the accounting manipulation her administration used, putting off the transfer of funds to state banks, was a practice employed by previous governments. Her opponents say it allowed her to expand unfairly public spending and boost her re-election campaign in 2014. Rousseff on Tuesday said the impeachment process was started by lower chamber Speaker Eduardo Cunha, who is charged with corruption and money laundering, out of revenge for her government not shielding him from ethics committee hearings. She accused Temer, leader of the PMDB party, of plotting against her. During her trip to New York, Temer will temporarily assume the presidency, an irony not lost on his aides,” continue Paraguassu and Boadle.

However, both Temer and the Supreme Court have argued the issue. "This is a rather unusual coup," said Temer's spokesman Marcio de Freitas. "She is going to the U.N. to denounce a coup but handing over power during her trip to the man she says is trying to overthrow her." "This is totally mistaken. Congress and the Supreme Court have made it quite clear the impeachment process has complied with the Constitution up to now," Justice Celso de Mello said.

Rousseff’s opponent have already traveled to the U.S. to advocate for the impeachment: Senate Foreign Relations Committee chairman Aloysio Nunes, of the opposition PSDB party, was in Washington this week to explain to U.S. government officials why the process is constitutional.

 

By Stefan Paraber for GIA.

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