Fourth minister goes
Just eight months into her new government, President Dilma Rousseff has lost a fourth minister.
Minister for Agriculture. Wagner Rossi, has resigned following corruption allegations. He denies the allegations. The president said that she ‘deeply regretted’ the resignation of the minister who had not been ‘treated with the presumption of innocence’ with regards to the allegations.
Elsewhere, the BrazzilMag is reporting that the Republic Party (PR) has left the ruling Lulista coalition following the resignation in July of the Minister of Transport, Alfredo Nascimento, also over allegations of corruption. The PR has 41 seats in the Chamber of Deputies and five seats in the Federal Senate. Senator Nascimento is a PR member.
This still leaves the government with a safe working majority, prior to the PR leaving they had 311 of the 513 Deputies in the Chamber of Deputies (the lower house) and 50 of the 81 members in the Federal Senate. The ruling coalition now consists of nine parties.
Republic Party leader, Lincoln Portela, is reported as saying that the party has “no hard feelings” and will adopt a ‘critical support’ attitude towards the government. The party leader has also stated that all the PR ministerial posts in the government are now at the disposal of the president but that if any members are invited to remain and wish to do so then they are free to take whatever decision they think is right.
Opinion polls this week and last continue to show strong support for President Dilma Rousseff. The Sensus poll released this week shows 70.2% support for the president whilst an Ibope poll last week gave her 67% support.