Lula allies with artists to defeat Bolsonaro at the polls

Sao Paulo, Sep 26 (EFE).- Former leader and election favorite Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva on Monday received the support of artists and celebrities, to whom he promised to “rebuild a country devastated” by President Jair Bolsonaro.

“We are going to get that genocidaire out of the Planalto Palace (seat of government) and put democracy back!” said the Workers’ Party (PT) candidate and leader of all the polls in an event in Sao Paulo.

Singers, actors, intellectuals and digital influencers gathered in an auditorium near the Sambadrome to bolster support for leftist Lula against the far-right Bolsonaro, who is second favorite with a disadvantage of about 15 percentage points.

In his speech, 76-year-old Lula called for a vote to end the “war installed in the country since the current president came to power” and that has “divided families and transformed old friends into enemies.”

He also accused the retired army captain of being “incapable of shedding a tear” for the nearly 700,000 Covid-19 deaths in the country, which he attributed in part to the “criminal irresponsibility of the government.”

Lula acknowledged that, if he wins, “the challenge will be immense,” but he promised to end hunger, raise the minimum wage, help families renegotiate their debts, reform income taxes, invest in infrastructure and maintain subsidies for the poorest. He also reiterated his environmental commitments.

In the event there was even a red carpet, somewhat tarnished by the absence of the headliners who were expected to be there.

The iconic singer-songwriters Caetano Veloso and Gilberto Gil participated through recorded messages. There was also a small international representation that supported Lula from a distance.

American actors Mark Ruffalo and Danny Glover affirmed that Lula is the ideal leader to protect the Amazon, while Roger Waters, lead singer of Pink Floyd, referred to the former president as a true and reliable politician.

Singers Pabllo Vittar and Daniela Mercury did attend Monday’s event.

“Voting for Lula is voting for democracy and love,” said Mercury.

The former president, who governed Brazil between 2003 and 2010, would need to exceed 50 percent of the valid votes, a scenario that several electoral polls have already anticipated, the most recent on Monday.

The Ipec institute predicted Lula would get 52 percent of the valid votes, that is, excluding blank and null votes, compared to 34 percent for the far-right leader.

Meanwhile, Bolsonaro took to social media to campaign and poke at his biggest political opponent ahead of Sunday’s election.

“To deceive the innocent, the PT now sells itself as ‘of love.’ Considering that they promoted the biggest corruption scheme in history and placed Brazil among the most violent nations in the world, with homicide numbers at the levels of a country in civil war, only if it’s bandit love,” the far-right leader wrote on Twitter. EFE


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