Lula carnival campaigns in Bolsonaro’s stronghold

Rio de Janeiro, Oct 23 (EFE).- Carnival troupes backing Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva’s bid for the Brazil presidency marched Sunday in Rio de Janeiro’s conservative beachside neighborhood – a traditional bastion of far-right President Jair Bolsonaro.

The troupes, supported by social groups, took over the streets of Copacabana as the campaign for the second round of the presidential election heated up.

The boisterous walk, which began with a rally, moved several blocks from Copacabana, a regular gathering point for supporters of President Bolsonaro, who is running for re-election and will face Lula in the second round of voting.

Lula won the first round of voting on Oct.2 with 48.4 percent of the vote against Bolsonaro’s 43.2 percent, a far higher result than projected by surveys.

The polls now show a technical tie by the margin of a two-point error, with 49 percent versus 45 percent.

The colorful “blocos,” led by percussion ensembles, clowns on stilts, and samba dancers, created a carnival scene in the Leme area by supporting Lula and the social causes advocated by his campaign.

Parallel to the so-called “Carnalula,” which Lula did not attend, the former union leader addressed a press conference in Sao Paulo to reiterate the importance of people voting and exceeding the 20.9 percent abstention rate in the first lap.

For Lula, his rival’s campaign is “an industry for the production of lies,” and that is why he asked people to “go en masse to vote against the barbarity of lies and genocide” on Oct.30 for the second round.

“It is not a dispute between one man and another. What is at stake is a dispute between democracy and barbarism, between truth and lies,” said Lula. who governed for two terms between 2003 and 2010.

“We are going to restore Brazil’s diplomatic relationship with all the countries of Latin America, Africa, Europe, the United States, China (…) We are going to prove that the economy can grow again.” EFE


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