Dilma Rousseff has been fighting impeachment for over 10 months, and on Wednesday she was roundly defeated. She was voted out of office 61 to 20 votes, a crushing defeat for the Workers Party after being in power for 13 years.
The President is charged with using illegal state loans to cover up holes in the budget, and was judged by Senators guilty of much worse crimes than those she is accused of. However, in a separate vote she was not barred from public office.
Dilma Rousseff was once one of the world’s most popular politicians, with approval ratings of 92% which have been steadily declining her whole time in office due to an economic crisis and bribery scandal to end at 13%.
During the impeachment proceedings, Rousseff has maintained that she is innocent and the impeachment is a right wing coup against her, Brazil’s first female president, and the left in Brazil. After hearing the verdict against her, she said that she would appeal the result and that she would keep on fighting.
During the final stage of the impeachment proceedings there haven’t been mass protests like there were at the beginning. However, at the beginning of the week anti-impeachment protesters clashed with the police in São Paulo, and in Brasilia there was a pro-Dilma vigil in the main square.
The new President, and an instigator of the impeachment, is Michel Temer, he will be in office until the next elections in two years’ time. He is a centre right politician whose main goal during his presidency is to heal Brazil’s economy. He was also implicated in the bribery scandal known as Operation Carwash.
Dilma Rousseff’s impeachment is a crushing defeat of the Left in Brazil, whether it was democratic is up for debate.