In Brazil, Lula names a right-wing figure for his future presidential ticket

Lula names a right-wing figure, Geraldo Alckmin, for his future presidential ticket.  In Sao Paulo, Brazil, on April 8, 2022.

He is still not officially a candidate. But Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva has already elected his future vice president. On Friday, April 8, the popular leader of the Brazilian left, named as an ultra-favorite in the next presidential election, scheduled for October 2, named Geraldo Alckmin, the right-wing personality and former governor of the state of Sao Paulo, for his future ticket against the current head of state, Jair Bolsonaro.

The announcement came during a meeting in Sao Paulo between the main barons of the Workers’ Party (PT) and the Brazilian Socialist Party (PSB), a party recently attended by Mr Alckmin. Officially, the latter has only “proposed” the former governor’s name as a future vice president for a hypothetical Lula candidacy. But this apparently formal approach, aimed at not violating the country’s very strict electoral law (the announcement of the presidential candidates can’t be announced until the end of July) has not deceived anyone. The event resembled a coronation.

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“Nobody has more experience to become Vice-President than Alckmin! † then launched a radiant and relaxed Lula, dressed in a simple blue shirt, posing hand in hand for the cameras in the company of his future “number two”. “From now on you will call me ‘comrade Lula’ and I will call you ‘comrade Alkmin’!” †, the former steelworker added, sparking applause and laughter. Devastated and smiling, the lucky winner said he took on his new responsibility with “honor and enthusiasm” “This is not the time for selfishness, but for generosity, political greatness, self-sacrifice and unity”Geraldo Alckmin insisted.

Alckmin, a good preservative for the complexion

“Comrade Alckmin” † This title actually fits the character very little. Everything is against former metal worker Lula, 76, historical leader of the workers’ left, and Alckmin, 69, the perfect incarnation of the conservative Paulist upper middle class. The latter was born in 1952 in Pindamonhangaba, east of Sao Paulo, and trained as an anesthetist before entering politics in the early 1970s. A skilled maneuverer, Alckmin climbed all local levels, becoming a councilor, mayor, regional and federal deputy, before reaching the Grail and twice ruling the richest state in the country, from 2001 to 2006 and from 2011 to 2018.

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A founding member of the Brazilian Social Democratic Party (PSDB), a center-right party in power under President Fernando Henrique Cardoso (1995-2003), Alckmin is widely regarded as a seasoned conservative. He is a staunch Catholic, known for having a close relationship with Opus Dei, the establishment and industrial and financial circles. He is against legal abortion and is in favor of privatization.

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