Déborah B.L. Farias

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Supporters of Jair Bolsonaro, the far-right Brazilian presidential candidate who was stabbed during a recent campaign event, rally around an inflatable likeness of him in Sao Paulo on Sept. 9. His condition is serious but stable. (Andre Penner/AP)

Presidential campaigning has begun in Brazil. In a country where voting is compulsory, about 140 million are expected to cast ballots on Oct. 7.

This presidential election is uniquely uncertain. The country’s most popular politician — former president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, known as “Lula” — is in jail for corruption and barred from the ballot. The mainstream parties and politicians are tainted by the same massive corruption investigation that brought down Lula — leaving a relatively open field.

This uncertainty means women’s votes may decide the election. Let me explain.

Brazil’s shaky political landscape

With Lula off the ballot, his leftist Workers’ Party put former Sao Paulo mayor Fernando Haddad — who was Lula’s candidate for vice president — on the ballot for the presidency.…  Seguir leyendo »

Supporters lift former Brazilian president Luiz Inacio “Lula” da Silva outside the Metal Workers Union headquarters in Sao Bernardo do Campo on April 7. (AP)

Former president Luiz Inácio “Lula” da Silva is the front-runner in Brazil’s coming presidential election, scheduled for Oct. 7. But instead of being on the campaign trail, he is in jail, charged with corruption-related crimes. He’s expected to stay in prison while all his legal appeals are considered, which could take months — which means he may still be in jail when Brazilians vote.

Usually, a candidate behind bars means the game is over, both legally and politically. Here are three possible ways for da Silva to stay in contention this fall.

1) The former president doubles down on his candidacy.…  Seguir leyendo »