On Wednesday the Brazilian Senate voted 59-21 to take President Dilma Rousseff to trial for breaking fiscal and budget laws.
The President of Brazil, Dilma Rousseff is accused of using state controlled banks to pay for social programmes without congressional approval. In other words, rather than giving the banks money to distribute to the recipients of social welfare programmes, the banks had to pay out their own money so the government was essentially running up a huge overdraft (around $30 billion). Her party is also accused of using money from Petrobras, the state owned Brazilian oil company, to fund her presidential campaign.
Now, almost three months after the Senate voted to suspend President Dilma Rousseff from office, the Senate has now voted to take her to trial, another step on the way to her permanent removal from office.
Rousseff claims that the impeachment is a right-wing coup to remove a government that has improved the Brazilian working class by using an accounting technicality.
However, the Brazilian currency has been strengthened and the shares on the São Paulo stock market have increased over 30% since investors began to expect that the more business friendly Michel Temer would replace Rousseff.
Interim president Temer is still struggling to solve the fiscal crisis due to the country’s political uncertainty, and wants to end the trial quickly. He is also deeply unpopular with the Brazilian people, the majority of whom, whatever their opinion of President Rousseff, believe he staged a coup.