Brazil’s ex-president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva could win the 2018 presidential elections by a wide margin. He is followed by green candidate Marina Silva at 16 percent and far-right congressman Jair Messias Bolsonaro at 13 percent. São Paulo Mayor João Doria comes in fourth with 9 percent of voting intentions, even after only two months in office.
Commonly known as just “Lula”, the ex-president faces six heavy charges of money laundering and corruption. Especially following the latest release of plea deal testimonies with Odebrecht executives, Lula looks as dirty as ever. If convicted, he will be ineligible for the presidential race. Of course, the plea deals also incriminate most of the standing political class.
However, many Brazilians still remember the man for his revolutionary welfare policies and strong economic record. Lula’s administration lasted two terms from 2003 to 2010. The polls show the ex-president winning the upcoming election with 30 percent of the electorate, up about 5 percent from December.
An honest candidate
For 62 percent of Brazilians, the most important factor in choosing a president is finding an honest candidate. With all of the corruption scandals going on, it has become difficult to trust most politicians. Unlike Lula, both Marina and Bolsonaro have not yet turned up in any corruption schemes.
In fact, in the case of a second round of votes, the green candidate remains the only politician that could win over Lula. The green candidate launched her own party, Rede Sustentabilidade, in 2015. She was an activist with the Workers’ Party for over three decades prior to serving as Lula’s Environmental Minister. One of eleven children on a rubber plantation in the Amazon, Silva declared her leave of the party in 2009. She is the first Brazilian politician to proudly claim her indigenous and African roots.