The head of outgoing Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro’s party announced Tuesday that the party will be the main opposition to President-elect Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva when he assumes office in January.
Valdemar Costa Neto said his right-wing Liberal Party (PL) is not planning to take issue with the country’s recent presidential election but is awaiting a report from the military to see whether it points to any irregularities in the polls.
Costa Neto also announced that the Liberal Party will back Bolsonaro to be their candidate for the 2026 presidential election.
On Oct. 30, Bolsonaro lost to Lula in a tight race. Lula garnererd 50.9% of the vote compared to Bolsonaro’s 49.1%, according to Brazil’s Superior Electoral Court (TSE).
Brazil’s incoming and outgoing governments have since started the transition of power. Last week, Bolsonaro gave a guarded speech without directly conceding defeat but promised to abide by the constitution.
But prior to the presidential election, Bolsonaro had cast doubt on whether he would respect the results, raising concerns about Brazil’s electronic voting system without providing evidence.
During Tuesday’s press conference, Costa Neto was asked by reporters whether he recognizes Lula’s victory, but he avoided answering the question and instead said he would await the report by the military.
“It’s difficult. We’ll have to wait for the army’s report tomorrow. We have several questions that we asked the TSE. Let’s wait for these answers,” he said.
In Brazil, there is no indication of any irregularity, while overseas, the election results were quickly recognized by various leaders.
Costa Neto also highlighted the strong opposition Lula will face by a large number of conservative lawmakers in both chambers of the legislature.
He said most of these lawmakers “are defenders of the same ideals that the PL defends,” adding the party will not renounce its ideas.
“It will be opposition to communist and socialist values. It will be opposition to the future president,” he added.
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