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Advance of the PT left

Friday 15 November 2002, by João Machado

The PT’s results in the various elections that took place at the level of the states that make up the Brazilian federation varied considerably although there was a certain upwards tendency in the vote. There were some pleasant surprises; in Sao Paulo, where the candidate for state governor was José Genuino [considered to be on the left of the PT - ed] he won more than 32% of valid votes (the best score ever obtained by the PT in an election in this state). Thus, he will for the first time contest the second round, having beaten the rightwing candidate, Paulo Maluf, who won 21.38%. In some states, the results of the PT candidates were better than expected. However, there were also some worrying results. In Río Grande do Sul, whose government has been the main showpiece for the PT, Tarso Genro went through to the second round but with only 37% of valid votes, while the candidate of the right, Rigotto, gained 41.17%.

The PT won the government of the small state of Acre (in the northwest of Brazil, near the frontier with Peru - Jorge Viana was the re-elected candidate) and the state of Piaí (with the support of the former governor who had been dismissed for abuse of power) in the first round.

Turning to the results for deputies and senators, the PT increased its number, although not spectacularly, since in many places it ceded its posts to its ally, the Liberal Party.

Finally, we should draw attention to the results for the PT left; these were fairly good, taking into account that this left had to follow a national political orientation with which it disagreed completely.

To give a rough idea, of the 70 or 80 federal deputies elected for the PT, 10 participated in the list supported by the Socialist Democracy Tendency in the recent internal elections in the party to choose candidates, an increase of 15%. [Supporters of the Socialist Democracy Tendency include the current vice-governor of Río Grande do Sol, Miguel Rossetto, the former mayor of Porto Alegre and current state deputy Raul Pont, and the state senator for Alagoas, Heloisa Helena - ed].

Also elected as senator was Ana Júlia, from the state of Pará. In total, the left of the party accounts for about 30% of federal deputies, a better percentage than before.