Frontrunner for the Brazilian presidency, Dilma Rousseff.
Brazil, Latin America: Week in Review

Brazilian Presidential Election To Go To Runoff; Dilma Rousseff Fails To Break 50 Percent Threshold

October 4, 2010 By Staff

Frontrunner for the Brazilian presidency, Dilma Rousseff.

Today in Latin America

Top Story — With 96 percent of the votes counted as of Sunday night, no winner has been declared in the Brazilian presidential election, according to Brazilian press reports. The race will continue to a second-round vote on Oct. 31.

Dilma Rousseff of the governing Workers Party (PT) led the election with 46.34 percent of the vote, according to Brazilian daily A Folha de São Paulo. José Serra of the Brazilian Social Democracy Party (PSDB) held second place with 32.85 percent. Marina Silva of the Green Party (PV) came in as a strong third-place candidate with 19.64 percent.

Under Brazilian law, a candidate can only win a presidential race if they receive more than 50 percent of the vote. Because Rousseff did not manage to break that threshold, she will face Serra in a runoff election at the end of the month.

Though Rousseff had hoped her strong lead in the polls would translate into a first-round election, current President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva appeared to anticipate the possibility of a runoff on Sunday, telling reporters “I didn’t win any election in the first round,” according to The Guardian.

Congressional and gubernatorial elections were also held throughout the country.

The vote took place as Brazil is enjoying strong economic growth and a reduction in the size of its notorious wealth gap, which has fed the popularity President Lula da Silva the PT.

A recent poll from the Pew Research Center found that Brazilians are feeling optimistic about the economy and their country’s role in world affairs, The Miami Herald reports. Sixty-two percent of Brazilians said they felt their economy was in good shape. Of the 22 countries surveyed, on the Chinese had more positive opinions about their economy.

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Image: Agência Brasil.

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