Presidential race is too close to call
With just over two weeks to go to the second round runoff of the Presidential election in Brazil the two contenders are in a virtually even position.
Two polls released this week by Datafolha and Ibope both give left-wing incumbent President Dilma of the Workers’ Party (PT) Rousseff 44% of the vote whilst her centrist rival Aécio Neves of the Brazilian Social Democracy Party (PSDB) is on 46%.
The two polls, the first to be released since the first round on 5th October may be showing a reaction to the first round result and could be the high point for Neves. Something similar happened when Marina Silva became the Brazilian Socialist Party’s (PSB) candidate; she shot up in the polls to 37% but then dropped back to 21.32% in the first round.
Although Neves might have reached his high point he is being endorsed by more and more groups. The PSB have endorsed him although Marina Silva has yet to do so. Most of the smaller parties standing candidates in the first round have also backed Neves against Rousseff.
The campaign is now open for both sides to lose; Rousseff has seen more bad economic figures released this week and along with several corruption stories is being battered by Neves. But the centrist candidate is seen as being part of a business elite and Rousseff has suggested that he will shut down programmes designed to support the poor, something that he has denied.