Jair Bolsonaro, the far-right populist who served as president of Brazil till he was unseated by former President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva in October, upended political norms when he was elected in 2018.
Mr. Bolsonaro’s broadsides against women, gay people, Brazilians of color and even democracy — “Let’s go straight to the dictatorship,” he as soon as mentioned — made him so polarizing that he initially struggled to discover a working mate.
However his marketing campaign, filled with offended tirades towards corruption and violence that largely matched the nationwide temper, appealed to the hundreds of thousands who voted him into energy. Whereas his rivals had been extra typical, Mr. Bolsonaro, now 67, channeled the wrath and exasperation many Brazilians felt over rising crime and unemployment — issues that they more and more believed the corrupt governing class was powerless to deal with.
His incendiary remarks through the years and all through the marketing campaign solid him as a political disrupter, just like Donald J. Trump in the USA.
All through his presidency, Mr. Bolsonaro, who served within the navy earlier than coming into politics, methodically questioned and criticized the safety of Brazil’s digital voting system, regardless of the dearth of credible proof of an issue, and attacked mainstream information shops as dishonest.
Since Brazil started utilizing digital voting machines in 1996, there was no proof that they’ve been used for fraud. As a substitute, the machines helped eradicate the fraud that when Brazil’s elections within the age of paper ballots.
However these information haven’t mattered a lot to Mr. Bolsonaro or his supporters, who’ve as an alternative targeted their consideration on a collection of anecdotal obvious abnormalities within the voting course of and outcomes, in addition to many conspiracy theories.
Like Mr. Trump, Mr. Bolsonaro spent a lot of his time in workplace warning that the institution was plotting towards him. Mr. Trump railed towards the “deep state,” whereas Mr. Bolsonaro accused a few of the judges who oversee Brazil’s Supreme Court docket and the nation’s electoral court docket of attempting to rig the election.
By the tip of Mr. Bolsonaro’s time period, it was clear that his assaults had had an impact: A lot of Brazil’s citizens appeared to have lost faith in the integrity of the nation’s elections.
Ernesto Londoño and Manuela Andreoni contributed reporting.