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  HOME | Brazil (Click here for more)

Poll Shows 81% of Brazilians Want President to Stand Trial

BRASILIA – Survey results released on Monday indicate that 81 percent of Brazilians want to see President Michel Temer stand trial on corruption charges.

The lower house of Congress is due to vote Wednesday on whether to allow the case against the president to go forward.

Putting the head of state on trial would require the votes of a two-thirds majority of the chamber, where parties allied with Temer hold a majority of the 513 seats.

Market-research firm IBOPE surveyed 1,000 registered voters from all regions of Brazil during the period July 24-26. The poll has a margin of error of plus/minus three percentage points.

Nearly 80 percent of respondents said that they would view lawmakers who voted against putting Temer on trial as “accomplices” to corruption.

If Wednesday’s vote goes against the president, he would be suspended for 180 days pending the outcome of the trial.

Temer is accused of accepting bribes from meatpacking giant JBS and of encouraging that company to pay hush money to a former top lawmaker convicted earlier this year in connection with the Petrobras scheme.

Those allegations stem from plea-bargain testimony by JBS executives, including an audio recording in which Temer appears to tell company chairman Joesley Batista that payments to the former speaker of Brazil’s lower house of Congress, Eduardo Cunha, needed to continue to prevent him from turning state’s evidence.

Temer, who has vehemently denied any wrongdoing, became president in August 2016 after Congress ousted elected head of state Dilma Rousseff on legally dubious grounds.

 

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