By Selwyn Duke
“What happens in Washington doesn’t always stay in Washington,” wrote The New York Times in a November 14 opinion piece. Author Natalia Viana, a Brazilian “investigative journalist,” could’ve been alluding to the 2000 election, after which some Democrats called President George W. Bush illegitimate; to Stacey Abrams, who repeatedly claimed she was the rightful governor of Georgia; or to the Trump-Russia-collusion hoax, whose orchestrators insisted that Putin stole the election for the 45th president. But she wasn’t.
Instead, she was claiming that supporters of Brazil’s president, Jair Bolsonaro, were mirroring Donald Trump by claiming that their October 30 run-off election — which Bolsonaro “lost” to socialist Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva by less than two percent of the vote — might have been stolen.
But the mirroring would go far beyond that, according to Bolsonaro’s son, Eduardo Bolsonaro. In fact, he says that the Brazilian election was stolen just the way the U.S.’s election was.
The comments were made in response to a question from journalist Ben Bergquam, who has been “reporting from CPAC Mexico this weekend for Real America’s Voice,” The Gateway Pundit wrote Saturday. Bergquam asked if the Brazilian election was stolen the way America’s was, to which the younger Bolsonaro responded:
Pretty much the same way. We have a lot of questions. Our party is suggesting for electoral courts to continue the investigation because you have a lot of evidence. Unfortunately, they are not doing that. That’s why people take to the streets. Today we have I think 18 days in the streets protesting because they do not want a criminal again in the presidency. But also because of the way they campaigned…. And the evidence from the machines is only one thing. There were much other things that the electoral court did not go in the right way during the campaign .
Brazil President’s son, Eduardo Bolsonaro, says they stole Brazil’s elections like they stole America‘s and they’re not going to stop fighting until they take their country back. Then calls out the #fakenews! #CPACMexico@RealAmVoice @KariLake @WendyRogersAZ pic.twitter.com/5U4rl5W9hq
— Ben Bergquam – Real America’s Voice (RAV-TV) News (@BenBergquam) November 19, 2022
In the protests Bolsonaro referenced, sources estimate that millions of his father’s supporters took to the streets to demonstrate against what they consider an illegitimate election. (Video below; relevant portion begins at 0:55.)
Then there’s the footage below.
Part of the issue with “Lula,” as Brazil’s radical left-wing president-elect is commonly called, relates to why Eduardo Bolsonaro called him a “criminal.” As Breitbart reported November 4:
Bolsonaro supporters are demanding a constitutional “federal intervention” to keep Lula from taking over. Some have convened outside of military offices, including the top headquarters in Brasilia, demanding a military coup.
The “federal intervention” supporters argue that, as a convicted felon, Lula should never have legally been allowed on the ballot. Lula was convicted in 2017 of taking bribes while in office as president and, after multiple appeals, sentenced to more than 20 years in prison. Last year, the Supreme Federal Tribunal (STF), the nation’s top court, overturned the condition on procedural grounds, failing to exonerate Lula with any new evidence showing he did not commit the crimes in question. As no one has challenged the evidence against Lula, opponents contend that he was never a legitimate presidential candidate.
The Brazilian Constitution allows a “federal intervention” in select cases of emergency, which supporters contend fits the current situation. Bolsonaro himself has taken no actions to indicate that he supports such an intervention and has begun the official presidential transition process, according to his chief of staff.
Meanwhile, the Brazilian establishment is dealing with the demonstrators’ gripes not with transparency, but with the Justin Trudeau technique: An election tribunal has shut down pro-Bolsonaro WhatsApp and Telegram chats and a Supreme Court minister has “ordered banks to block funds from at least 42 agricultural entrepreneurs supporting President Jair Bolsonaro,” according to The Gateway Pundit. In addition, there are reports that Brazilian authorities have tried seizing some protesters’ children (video below).
Por volta de 22:00 horas (18/11/22) o Conselho Tutelar tentou retirar crianças dos seus pais, em frente ao Batalhão do Exército na Av.Fernandes Lima – Maceió-AL
A resposta foi essa👇🏻 pic.twitter.com/nKmUfQQXVK
— Advogados de Direita Brasil®️ (@movadvdireitabr) November 19, 2022
Moreover, with the Brazilian government divided between pro- and anti-Bolsonaro factions, a “conflict between the pro-Lula Supreme Court and the pro-Bolsonaro military looms,” The Gateway Pundit also asserts.
Speaking of which, the military has already investigated electoral-fraud claims and issued a 65-page report. While the report doesn’t cite any vote-count abnormalities, “Defense Minister Paulo Nogueira wrote that ‘it is not possible to say’ with certainty the computer[i]zed vote tabulation system hasn’t been infilitrated [sic] by malicious code,” reported the Associated Press. Moreover, because of the possible risk, “the report suggests creating a commission comprised of members of civil society and auditing entities to further investigate the functioning of the electronic voting machines,” the AP continues.
Whatever the case in Brazil — and I don’t understand that nation’s election dynamics as I do our own — it’s always suspicious when establishment voices unite in saying “Nothing to see here, move along.” For sure, the very same people who mismanaged Covid and issued prescriptions generally ranging from being ignorance-based to being outright deceitful, now call election-fraud claims the “Big Lie,” as the aforementioned New York Times article did. Yet a simple point is glossed over.
If Bush was an “illegitimate” president and if Stacey Abrams was Georgia’s rightful governor after 2018 and if Russia stole the 2016 election for Trump — and if Republicans could possibly steal the 2024 election, as Hillary Clinton has claimed they will do — it’s a tacit admission that our elections are not secure. The point is that there is consensus: Figures from the left, right, and center have all agreed, in so many words, that our elections can be stolen.
Given this, the rational response would be to unite in scrutinizing elections and developing fraud-resistant systems. Instead, while liberals have joined conservatives in vociferously complaining about electoral fraud (albeit at different times), they steadfastly ignore remedies and call anyone proposing such a “denier” — whether here or in Brazil.
In fairness, though, some may say there’s a profound difference between liberals and conservatives when issuing electoral-fraud complaints: The former don’t really mean it.
Of course, the argument “They were only lying” doesn’t exactly breed confidence.