From the United States to Brazil, democracy undermined – Liberation

Midterms: 2022 US Midterm Electionscase

In Brasilia and Washington, and perhaps soon in Paris, the same mechanisms that shake democracy are at work.

Barely time to rejoice in the defeat of Jair Bolsonaro on Sunday in Brazil that we must worry, if we look to the north, of these midterms which are fast approaching in the United States and which are announced high risk for Joe Biden. These mid-term elections in the House of Representatives and the Senate (for a third of the seats) are rarely favorable to the tenant of the White House. But this time, Democratic strongholds long considered impregnable (in New York, Washington or Oregon, for example) are within earshot of the Republicans. Faced with this risk, Joe Biden has raised his voice in recent days, Barack Obama has rolled up his sleeves. In vain.

However, the American president does not have to be ashamed of his record. But whatever. It also matters that the threats, extreme in the aftermath of the presidential election with the invasion of the Capitol, continue to undermine American democracy. To the point of threatening her. The attack on Nancy Pelosi’s husband at her home by a far-right activist has brutally exposed the violence of the political climate for all to see. This democratic cancer, too rooted in the United States for Biden to have been able to reconcile the two camps in two years, is also plaguing Brazil. Lula’s narrow victory should not hide this reality. A very natural relief greeted his victory. But the country, like the United States, is deeply fractured. The same mechanisms – fake news, conspiracy… – are at work there. And Jair Bolsonaro’s refusal to quickly recognize his defeat is an additional sign of concern. Should he belatedly admit it, it wouldn’t change much.

The survival of democracy presupposes a minimum of consensus on the truth of the facts. This minimum is breached in the two largest democracies on the American continent. It is in Europe (England, Hungary…). It is beginning to be so in France. We would be wrong to believe ourselves stronger or smarter than others.


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