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Support for Rousseff faltering, but still the strongest candidate for October's election

Saturday, March 29th 2014 - 06:17 UTC
Full article 5 comments
The Brazilian president is well ahead of her potential rivals The Brazilian president is well ahead of her potential rivals

Support for Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff has faltered ahead of October's presidential election, a poll showed Thursday, although she remains a favorite to win a second term.

 With a sluggish economy, high inflation and a scandal surrounding Brazil's Petrobras, Rousseff's personal approval rating has fallen to 51% from 56% in November, the survey by the Ibope polling institute and Brazil's National Industry Confederation showed.

Overall support for her administration fell to 36% from 43% in the previous poll, while 27% of those polled disapproved of the government, compared with 20% in November.

The drop in support reflects the challenges that Rousseff must overcome in a bid for re-election on October 5.

Though she and her party still enjoy widespread support because of economic gains made during the administration of former President Lula da Silva, her mentor and predecessor, Rousseff is currently presiding over the fourth year of lackluster growth in Latin America's largest economy.

Stubborn price increases and a lack of investment in the country's public services led to mass nationwide demonstrations last year that have caused many voters to question the governing Workers' Party's 12-year grip on the presidency.

Some voters are also critical of the billions of dollars worth of public funds that have been spent on 12 stadiums for soccer's World Cup, which kicks off in São Paulo June 12.

Struggling businesses, meanwhile, have increasingly complained about what they perceive as the government's short-sighted and interventionist management of the economy. Rousseff has focused mostly on curbing costs through tax breaks and price controls, not the sort of structural reforms that economists have long argued are necessary to make Brazil more efficient.

Recently, Rousseff has also been roiled by the ongoing scrutiny of a 2006 purchase of an oil refinery in Texas by Petrobras. As chairwoman of the company's board at the time, Rousseff approved the transaction, which is now being criticized as too costly.

Still, other recent polls suggest that Rousseff is still likely to win re-election.

An Ibope poll of voter intentions last week found Rousseff has 43% of the electorate's support, against 15% for Senator Aecio Neves of the main opposition party and 7% for Eduardo Campos, governor of the northeastern state of Pernambuco.

Categories: Politics, Brazil, Latin America.

Top Comments

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  • ChrisR

    Mmmm!

    When you are the only contender (it seems) then shouldn't it be overwhelming support?

    Mar 29th, 2014 - 11:50 am 0
  • GeoffWard2

    Entering the role of Presidenta, she's had to break a lot of faiths
    as the corruptions and criminalities in Brasil
    - and especially in the government at all levels -
    have resulted in her 'governing the ungovernable'.

    BUT,
    ** The huge hike in politicians' salaries,
    * the legacy of huge ring-fenced spends,
    * the lack of a sound education system,
    * the woeful infrastructure,
    ** the swing to Bolivarism, and
    ** her general failure to get a grip on Mercosur ...
    (** = down to her)
    all these militate against her winning 'the popular vote',
    but - sadly - I can see nobody who would do it better.

    Mar 29th, 2014 - 09:12 pm 0
  • cornelius

    Stupid Brazilians as long the lazy ones get a check (23,000.000.00 million of them) they will reelect her and they will go bankrupt this is Paul Harvey good daaaay.

    Mar 30th, 2014 - 10:10 pm 0
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