While the local and international press were busy talking about Marina Silva, voters were looking at pro-market senator Aécio Neves:
Mr. Neves has said he would go after Ms. Rousseff on what he considers her vulnerability: Brazil’s struggling economy. He has vowed to slash government ministries, simplify Brazil’s tax code and tackle inflation.
Popular with investors and businessmen, Mr. Neves has said that, if elected, he would appoint respected economist Arminio Fraga, the former head of the central bank, to be his finance minister.
The reason for Neves’s ascendance?
the economy is undergoing a wrenching U-turn. Brazil slipped into recession this year after four years of stagnation, and inflation is on the rise. The state-owned oil company Petróleo Brasileiro SA is mired in alleged embezzlement and other scandals. Since Ms. Rousseff took office, the real has lost a third of its value against the dollar and the stock market is down by 21%.
Silva was Dilma-light, and Dilma promises “More Changes, More Future.”
The question is, Does Aécio have the personality to sway the uneducated, low-information, low-income voter?