Brazil's new president, Michel Temer, promised a new era of government for the crisis-hit country Wednesday, shortly after being sworn in following the impeachment of his predecessor, Dilma Rousseff. Earlier, the Brazilian senate voted 61-20 to remove Rousseff from office for breaking federal budget laws.
Speaking at a televised cabinet meeting after taking the oath of office, Temer said his priorities were to fix Brazil's economy, attract foreign investment, reduce unemployment and begin reform of the pension system.
But he warned that he would not tolerate divisions within his coalition. Temer appeared annoyed that some of his allies had moved to grant Rousseff political rights without consulting his government.
Temer took the oath of office in the Senate surrounded by his cabinet members.
Rousseff was accused of illegally using money from state banks to cover deficits in the federal budget in an effort to boost her popularity heading into the 2014 presidential election. She denied wrongdoing and accused her political opponents of using the trial as a way to overthrow her and undermine Brazil's democracy.
They decided to interrupt the mandate of a president who had committed no crime. They have convicted an innocent person and carried out a parliamentary coup, Rousseff said in a statement following the Senate vote.
Lawyers from the pro-impeachment side, though, argued that Rousseff's alleged corruption directly contributed to the economic issues Brazil has experienced over the past several years.
The world needs to know that we are not just voting about accounting issues, said Janaina Paschoal, the author of the impeachment request against Rousseff. Impeachment is a constitutional remedy that we need to resort to when the situation gets particularly serious, and that is what has happened.