Brazil's President Jair Bolsonaro, a former Army captain, Friday launched his counterattack against Federal Supreme Court (STF) and Electors Supreme Court (TSE) Justice Alexandre De Moraes and requested his dismissal to the Senate.
Senate Speaker Rodrigo Pacheco has confirmed the reception of the documents seeking the launch of impeachment proceedings against De Moraes, with whom Bolsonaro has had a series of clashes over the past few months.
”We are not going to give in to any type of attack to disunite Brazil (...) count on me for this union and not for division, Pacheco said despite being a close ally of the Bolsonaro administration.
Bolsonaro claims that De Moraes is biased in an investigation opened in 2019 by the STF in which the president himself is a suspect, making De Moraes at the same time an investigator, accuser and judge as well as a censor to freedom of expression.
De Moraes launched an inquiry against Bolsonaro for slander and incitement to crime, when raising doubts about the trustworthiness of Brazil's electronic voting system in force since 1996.
The STF Friday repudiated the president's actions against one of its members for decisions in an investigation approved by the Full Court.
De Moraes' fellow magistrates said, the democratic rule of law does not tolerate a judge being accused of his decisions.
The STF also expressed its total confidence in the independence and impartiality of the controversial De Moraes.
De Moraes' actions were sparked by a request from the TSE, which is also investigating Bolsonaro for his remarks against the voting system. At the time, Bolsonaro hinted that if the system was not changed there could be no 2022 presidential elections, as per statements made by the President in a live Facebook broadcast, during which the Chief Executive showed evidence gathered during a Federal Police investigation and which should have been kept under the utmost secrecy.
Bolsonaro also maintained that there has been electoral fraud over the years and that in 2018 he should have won in the first round. The President had announced he would also seek the impeachment of STF Justice Luis Roberto Barroso, whom he came to label as an imbecile for his actions as TSE Chief Justice. Bolsonaro said that De Moraes and Barroso had breached “constitutional limits with their actions.
De Moraes is due to chair the TSE during the next elections in 2022, in which Bolsonaro will seek a new term in office, but, according to most surveys, is expected to lose to former leftist President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva.
As on previous occasions, the Senate is expected to shelf the impeachment request submitted by Bolsonaro, whose own impeachment has been sought over 140 times at the Lower House, where Speaker Arthur Lira has repeatedly held them up.