Brazil Elections

Brazil: New poll shows Lula with 33%, far-right Bolsonaro with 20% of voter support

Investment company conducted survey before far-right candidate was stabbed last Thursday

Left to right: Lula, Bolsonaro, Ciro Gomes, and Fernando Haddad. Pollster interviewed 2,000 voters / RBA

While Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva is appealing Brazil's top electoral court’s decision to be allowed to stand, the former president maintains a big lead in the presidential race, with 33 percent of voting intention, according to a poll released on Friday by XP/IPESPE.

The poll shows far-right candidate Jair Bolsonaro in second place, with 20 percent of voter support, followed by center-leftist Ciro Gomes, with 8 percent, and center-right candidate Marina Silva, with 7 percent.

The survey was conducted between Sep. 2 and 5, before the attack against Bolsonaro – who has the highest rejection rate among presidential contenders, as 62 percent of interviewees said they wouldn’t vote for him under any circumstances.

The poll was also conducted before coup president Michel Temer released a series of videos attacking right-wing presidential candidate Geraldo Alckmin and his party, the Brazilian Social Democracy Party (PSDB), for trying to hide their connection with the coup and the current Brazilian government. Alckmin ranks fifth with 5 percent of voting intention.

When Lula is not included in the poll, his current running mate, Fernando Haddad, supported by the former president, ranks second, with 14 percent of voter support, while Bolsonaro takes the lead with 20 percent. Gomes and Silva are tied with 8 percent, while Alckmin reaches 7 percent. When Lula’s support to Haddad is not mentioned, the latter reaches 8 percent and Gomes and Silva are up to 11 percent of voting intention.

The pollster interviewed 2,000 voters and the margin of error is plus or minus 2.2 percentage points.

Financial news website InfoMoney reported that the attack against Bolsonaro could reduce his rejection rate and appeal more to anti-Lula voters than other rivals, such as Alckmin, who is not taking off in the polls. Meanwhile, in the financial market, the dollar fell against the real (Brazilian currency) and the Ibovespa stock index rose after the attack against the far-right candidate.

XP Investimentos analyst Richard Back said the stabbing could increasing Bolsonaro’s chances of going to the second round of the election. “He was losing votes and, all of a sudden, he becomes a victim almost as big as Lula.”

Broker Pablo Spyer argues that Bolsonaro, who had 9 seconds of TV ad time, “now has 24 hours on all channels” [covering his attack].

The news website reported that the market had been inclined toward the far-right candidate as his campaign team includes an economist who advocates for selling state-owned companies and pro-market reforms.

Edition: Rede Brasil Atual