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  • The Brazilian president was sworn in on January 1 after beating Fernando Hadad (PT) 55 to 45.

    The Brazilian president was sworn in on January 1 after beating Fernando Hadad (PT) 55 to 45. | Photo: Reuters

Published 8 April 2019

The poll revealed that 30 percent of Brazilians believe his government is “bad or terrible.”

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro has made history once again and not for the right reasons. The far-right head of state has the worst approval rating in the first three months of a first mandate since the country returned to democracy in 1985, according to a survey published Sunday by Datafolha.

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The poll revealed that 30 percent of Brazilians believe his government is “bad or terrible,” 32 percent rank it “good or excellent”, and 33 percent say it is “average,” which comes as he will mark his 100th day in office on Wednesday.

This evaluation is the worst for a president since Fernando Collor in 1990 had a disapproval rating of 19 percent after three months. In contrast, Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva and Dilma Rousseff (PT) respectively had a 10 percent in 2003 and seven percent rating in 2011.

Fewer and fewer Brazilians trust Bolsonaro’s neoliberal and conservative policies. As optimism of the government's future after three months of office is also the worst since 1995: 59 percent expect Bolsonaro to have good administration, against 48 percent for Fernando Henrique Cardoso in 1995, 76 percent for Lula and 77 for Dilma.

Dubbed the “Trump of the tropics” for his admiration of the U.S. president, Bolsonaro’s hate-speech and lack of clear economic management are the main reasons behind this blow at his numbers.

Latin America’s largest economy merely grew 1.1 percent in 2018, and at the end of March, Brazil’s central bank cut its 2019 growth forecast to 2.0 percent from 2.4 percent, noting that net trade is expected to shave 0.2 percentage points off overall growth.

The latest poll also supports the figures released by the Brazilian Institute of Public Opinion and Statistics (IBOPE) on March 20, which stated that between since January, the approval of these policies decreased from 62 percent to 49 percent. While the percentage of people who do not trust him rose from 30 percent to 44 percent.

A brash comparison to imprisoned Lula, who still rallies public support and affection. According to local media Brasil de Fato, over 17 capital cities and 15 countries around the world confirmed their participation in the Free Lula campaign that flooded the streets on Sunday in support of the jailed former president. 

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