A Breakdown of Brazil's Political Crisis
Rachel Glickhouse

The first thing I noticed was there is no mention of Cunha. Really hard to understand the impeachment of Dilma without understanding that Cunha tried to use the threat of impeachment to avoid indictment. Now that we know that Cunha was one of Odebrecht’s 200 and that Odebrecht has been bribing Brazilian politicians of all stripes since the 1980s, it puts things in perspective.

My reading of the history of the PT was that the party was pretty left wing before Lula’s presidency, but Lula moved his core group towards the center to get elected. The PT’s base outside government is still pretty far from center. The elected PT group made the very changes to accountability in government that have made all of this possible.This is really what I find interesting.

Was the elected PT a victim of hubris, thinking it could control accountability mechanisms using the presidency in the face of rising opposition? Did the changing political landscape throw off their calculations? Was anyone at all anticipating that the PT itself could be the target of accountability operations? Did the mensalao give them overconfidence? Is Dilma a martyr?

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