Uma Vitória de Lula em 2006 Transformaria Estes Dois Anos de Crise em Quatro Anos de Governo Fraco

A crise pode ter implicações nos mercados. O Brasil precisa de um líder forte para fazer reformas estruturais e garantir o crescimento a longo prazo.

Business Week - Online.

Will Scandal Spare Lula But Kill Reform?

The corruption scandal engulfing the government of President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva has more plot twists than a telenovela, the TV soap operas Brazilians are so addicted to. It all began in May when a post office official was caught on video pocketing a $1,250 bribe. Then came the explosive allegation that members of the ruling Workers' Party (PT) were paying legislators of other parties $12,500 a month for their votes. Since then fresh accusations have emerged almost daily -- from the PT official caught trying to board a plane with $100,000 in his underpants to the "event organizer" who allegedly procured call girls for politicians from the PT and other parties.

But the crisis could have implications that would eventually affect the markets. Lula may yet limp on to secure a second term in national elections scheduled for October, 2006. But the future looks grim for the PT, with several high-level officials forced to step down as a result of the scandal. Without a solid core of supporters in Congress, Lula's ability to govern would dwindle. That's a concern since Brazil needs a strong leader to press ahead with difficult structural reforms to boost the economy's long-term growth potential. A Lula victory in 2006 would deliver two years of crisis followed by four years of weak government. For the 52 million voters who put their faith in Lula -- and even investors -- that would be harder to take than the worst telenovela.

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