The current impeachment process on the Brazilian president, Dilma Rousseff is bogus. The reason for this is that the crimes that she is being accused of committing are peanuts in comparison with other, more serious issues that her government did not address over her two terms.
Now, when she is just days away from being impeached by the Brazilian Senate, she has come out to promise early elections, should she be spared from being impeached.
The suspended president of Brazil is now committed to promoting a referendum on a possible early election in exchange for avoiding the process of impeachment. That is too little, too late for a woman who conducted herself arrogantly during her tenure.
Dilma Rousseff, pledged today to promote a referendum on the possibility of bringing forward elections scheduled for 2019, as soon as she is acquitted.
Rousseff announced that commitment during a statement in which she presented the terms of a “Letter to Brazilians” with just ten days before the Senate begins the final phase of the process that may end with her dismissal.
In that statement, Rousseff insisted on her innocence of the charges of irregular handling of budgets. She said that if it comes to her dismissal Brazil will be before suffering a “coup”. She said that the solution to the political and economic crisis in the country should be sought through the popular vote in direct elections.
Rousseff was suspended from her duties last May 12, when the Senate instituted impeachment proceedings whose final phase will begin on August 25 and is expected to last three to five days, possibly with her conviction and ouster.
The president will lose her position if a qualified majority of 54 votes; two-thirds of the Senate, favors her removal. This number of votes seems to have been already consolidated.
Ten days ago, in a vote that gave continuity to the process, the vote in favor of her dismissal was reached with a total of 59 in favor, compared to 21 who supported filing the case.
According to Rousseff, if she gets off and her innocence is proven, it “will be reaffirmed that the country is one with democratic rule of law” and that it “must build a new political journey,” leading to early elections scheduled for October 2018.
If Rousseff is finally dismissed, Michel Temer will complete her mandate. Temer, a former vice president of Rousseff replaced her in office since her suspension.
Dilma Rousseff Beyond Political Crimes
The other chapter of the Rousseff soap opera is the legal battle she is facing for her alleged obstruction of justice. She is now being investigated for allegedly protecting her godfather, Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, from prosecution by offering him a position in her government.
The Supreme Court of Brazil, which has to authorize proceedings against senior public officials, has given permission to the Prosecutor to open the investigation.
Police investigators suspect that the president wanted to appoint her predecessor, as his minister of the Civil House to prevent him from being detained in the Lava Jato investigation. The Lava Jato case involved corruption schemes in state oil company Petrobras.
A telephone conversation between Lula and Rousseff was published a day before Lula was supposed to be sworn into office last March, but the recording could not be used as evidence because authorities considered its publication as illegal.
In the dialogue, President Rousseff told Lula that she would send the document naming him minister and automatically granting him protection from prosecution and that he could use it if necessary.
At that time, Lula was being investigated for having received an apartment and a house as a gift from construction companies involved in the Petrobras case, and for that he risked being arrested.
In the same case that Rousseff is also being investigated, Lula da Silva and former ministers Jose Eduardo Cardozo and Aloizio Mercadante, former senator Delcídio do Amaral and two judges of the Superior Court of Justice, Marcelo Navarro and Francisco Falcão. All are suspected of trying to obstruct the investigation of the Petrobras case. The details of the investigation are not yet known.
Rousseff’s former ministers were summoned by former senator Do Amaral in his confession, who spoke about the corruption scheme in exchange for judicial benefits.
According to him, Jose Eduardo Cardozo tried to deflect investigations on the Petrobras case during a meeting with the Ricardo Lewandowski, in Portugal, and Aloizio Mercadante tried to “buy” the silence of Delcídio do Amaral. The judges of the High Court were also accused of attempting to obstruct the Petrobras case.
All the suspects have denied involvement in the plot. In a statement, Rousseff has said that the opening of the investigation will be “important to clarify the facts and to clarifying that at no time was obstruction of justice.”
Lula’s lawyers have published an article saying that the president “has never practiced acts that may constitute an obstruction of justice”.