Brazil Senate decides to open impeachment trial over suspended President Rousseff
After a day’s debate, Brazil’s Senate voted on August 10 to open impeachment trial against suspended President Dilma Rousseff, with 59 out of the 81 senators saying “Yes,” 21 saying “No” and Senate President abstaining.
Around the end of August, just days after the Rio Olympics end, a two-thirds majority would be needed for her final removal from presidency.
(Soundbite) Maelson Goncalves, Worker
“I do not think the impeachment should have happened. The president was elected by 5.4 million voters. If Congress wants to impeach her, it runs against the popular will. Now we have a hard day, and I think the future life will only be worse.”
The Senate suspended 68-year-old Rousseff, Brazil’s first woman president, on May 12 over accusations of illegal accounting practices and fiddling the budget to mask economic slump.
(Soundbite) Joao Abreu Santos, Company Staffer
“I think the president should be ousted. The impeachment has its ground. Our life is deplorable, and things will remain so, if she remains in power. The Workers’ Party promised to improve our lives, but it is not so. She should be ousted.”
If Rousseff was permanently removed, her Vice President and interim head of state Michel Temer would become the full-fledged president, until the next general election in 2018.
(Soundbite) Clara Santos, Retiree
“If President Rousseff should be impeached, (interim President Michel) Temer and (former lower house speaker Eduardo) Cunha should be impeached before her. The pair is the most malicious bandits in history. If you look through the list of the Congress people suspected of corruption, you feel that Congress should be dismissed. It is a pity that the reality is just like that.”
Rousseff was elected in 2011 and is now within her second term.
Staying in power for 13 years, her Workers’ Party has nourished a giant middle class for Brazil, but in recent years failed to keep the economy strong due to sagging international market demand.■