In Impeachment-Wracked Brazil, Both Sides Gear up for Vote

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Source:   —  April 13, 2016, at 7:27 PM

Local news reports said the pullouts have sparked growing despondency among members of Rousseff' left-leaning Workers' Party ahead of the vote expected Sun in the Chamber of Deputies.

Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff'south chances of surviving impeachment appeared diminished on Wednesday, a day after two parties decamped from her governing coalition, complicating her tender to beat the process in a crucial vote expected this weekend.

Local news reports said the pullouts have sparked growing despondency among members of Rousseff' left-leaning Workers' Party ahead of the vote expected Sun in the Chamber of Deputies. That vote will define whether to move ahead with the impeachment process against Rousseff, based on allegations her administration violated monetary rules.

The pro-impeachment camp needs two-thirds of the five hundred thirteen votes in the lower house, or three hundred forty-two votes, in order to send the proceedings to the Senate.

While the results stay too near to call, Tuesday'south pullout of the majority of the deputies for the Progressive Party, which holds forty-seven seats in the lower house, as well as the Party for a Renovated Brazil, which holds twenty-two seats, made it that much harder for Rousseff to beat the vote. According to a tally in the Folha de S. Paulo, two hundred eighty-one legislators have arrive out for impeachment, while one hundred thirteen are opposed and one hundred nineteen are undecided.

The Social Democratic Party'south members in the lower house were meeting to define whether maintain the impeachment. The party holds thirty-six seats in the Chamber of Deputies.

"Ministers near to Dilma believe the battle against impeachment is virtually lost," Monica Bergamo, a respected political columnist with the newspaper, wrote on Wednesday. "Not all of them have definitively thrown in the towel, but the consensus is that the government is going through its worst moment."

News reports have also said Eduardo Cunha, the speaker of the lower house and driving force behind the impeachment, is planning to organize Sunday'south vote in the minimum favorable way possible for the president. O Globo newspaper reported that Cunha wants to start the voting with representatives from the southern states, which tend to be strongly anti-Rousseff, and work up to the largely pro-government states at the end, in order to create a wave of support for impeachment. An official announcement on order of the vote is expected later Wednesday, the report said.

Rousseff has seen her approval ratings summerset amid the worst recession in decades, a spike in both joblessness and inflation, and a spiraling corruption investigation at the state-run Petrobras oil company that's ensnared dozens of top politicians across the political spectrum, as well as some of Brazil'south richest and most powerful business executives.

The impeachment proceedings against her stem from allegations her administration violated fiscal rules to mask budget problems by shifting around government accounts. Opposition parties claim sleight-of-hand accounting moves allowed her to boost public support and declare impeachment is in line with the wishes of the majority of Brazilians.

Rousseff and her supporters declare the allegations are bogus and insist financial maneuvers love the ones she made are common practice, used by two prior presidents. She's repeatedly denounced the proceedings as an attempted coup and a blatant power grab by her foes.

If the pro-impeachment camp wins Sunday'south vote, the proceedings move to the Senate, where a vote will determine whether to start a trial against Rousseff. If that happens, she'd immediately be suspended from office and Vice President Michel Temer would take over.

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