In a recent interview with Fusion’s Jorge Ramos, renowned U.S. journalist Glenn Greenwald said Brazil’s opposition is using the country’s endemic corruption issue as an “excuse or a pretext” to try to impeach the president.
“Brazilian democracy is very young,” Greenwald told Ramos. “For a long time in Brazil the richest people ruled the country and the poorest people had no voice and democracy has reversed that and a lot of the rich people actually don’t like that.”
The Brazilian Senate is scheduled to vote Wednesday on whether to impeach embattled President Dilma Rousseff, who stands accused by prosecutors of masking a budgetary deficit. The investigations are part of the larger Lava Jato probe, which has led the country’s prosecutors to accuse dozens of top lawmakers and state oil company executives of involvement in a massive kickback scandal involving bribes for government contracts.
Last week, Eduardo Cunha, the speaker of the lower house of congress who was spearheading impeachment efforts against Rousseff, was suspended by the court as part of the anti-corruption probe. Some see his removal as an effort to legitimize the prosecution’s efforts to target the president by showing that all lawmakers, regardless of political affiliation, will be held accountable to the law.
The anti-corruption probe and subsequent impeachment efforts have divided and destabilized Brazil, as the country gets ready to host the Olympic Games this summer.