Army Captain, Rainforest Warrior or Prisoner: Who’ll Rule Brazil?

(Bloomberg) -- With Brazil’s political party conventions having wrapped up on Sunday, no other candidates are expected to join the race for the presidency, barring exceptional circumstances. Politicians must formally register their candidacies with the electoral authorities by Aug. 15, before the campaign gets underway the following day. Here are the six leading candidates in the race for the presidency.

Army Captain, Rainforest Warrior or Prisoner: Who’ll Rule Brazil?
Army Captain, Rainforest Warrior or Prisoner: Who’ll Rule Brazil?

Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva*

  • *Imprisoned for corruption and likely to be barred from standing
  • Candidate for the left-wing Workers’ Party, or PT
  • President of Brazil from 2003-2010
  • Former metalworker and trade union leader in Sao Paulo
  • Currently leads the opinion polls for the presidential election
  • Promises to undo the market-friendly reforms of the Temer administration, and oppose the sale of state companies such as Petrobras and Eletrobras
     
Army Captain, Rainforest Warrior or Prisoner: Who’ll Rule Brazil?

Jair Bolsonaro

  • Candidate for the small, rightwing Social Liberal Party, or PSL
  • Ex-Army captain renowned for his provocative attacks on progressive values
  • Sympathetic to the military dictatorship in Brazil and highly critical of affirmative action
  • Second-placed in opinion polls behind Lula
  • Pledges to revoke gun control laws, loosen oversight of police, sell some state companies
  • Motto: “Brazil above everything, and God above everyone”
     
Army Captain, Rainforest Warrior or Prisoner: Who’ll Rule Brazil?

Marina Silva

  • Candidate for tiny Rede Sustentabilidade party
  • Mixed-race woman born to a family of poor rubber-tappers in the Amazonian state of Acre
  • Illiterate until age of sixteen, contracted hepatitis, malaria and leishmaniasis as a child
  • Former environment minister in Lula government
  • Calls for a “necessary state”—arguing that while the public finances must be brought under control, Brazil's current spending cap is “unreasonable”
  • This is her third campaign for the presidency—in both 2010 and 2014 she came third
     
Army Captain, Rainforest Warrior or Prisoner: Who’ll Rule Brazil?

Ciro Gomes

  • Candidate for the leftwing Democratic Labor Party or PDT
  • A former governor of the north-eastern state of Ceara and a former minister of national integration in the Lula government
  • Spent four months as finance minister in 1994 during the presidency of Itamar Franco
  • Running for the presidency for the third time, Gomes is known for his mercurial temperamant 
  • Struggled to forge alliances with other leftwing parties in this election
  • Pledges to revoke labor reform and all the oil contracts signed in Temer administration
     
Army Captain, Rainforest Warrior or Prisoner: Who’ll Rule Brazil?

Geraldo Alckmin

  • Candidate for the Brazilian Social Democracy Party, or PSDB
  • Four times governor of Sao Paulo and co-founder of PSDB
  • Trained as a doctor, with a specialization in anesthesiology
  • Lost to Lula in 2006 presidential elections
  • Considered the most business-friendly of the main candidates, he is backed by an extensive coalition of centrist parties, but so far he only attracts single digit voter intentions
  • He proposes cutting corporate taxes and allowing rural residents to carry guns
     
Army Captain, Rainforest Warrior or Prisoner: Who’ll Rule Brazil?

Alvaro Dias

  • Candidate for the Podemos party
  • Born in the state of Sao Paulo, raised in Parana state, where his political career began
  • He has switched parties half a dozen times over the course of his career, which he argues is proof of his consistency and their lack of ideological backbone
  • His main proposal consists of what he describes as the ‘refoundation of the Republic’, with a reduction in the number of ministries
  • He also wants to sell off dozens of state companies, except the oil company Petrobras, energy utility Eletrobras, and state banks Caixa Economica Federal and Banco do Brasil
     

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