Mayors Are Up for Election in Brazil. It’s a White Game

    Election day in Brazil - Marcelo Camargo ABr

    Election day in Brazil - Marcelo Camargo ABr Brazil, a country where a majority of residents identify as non-white, will head to the polls next month for municipal elections but in a stark example of the racial dynamics of the South American country, voters in nearly half of the municipalities will have only white candidates to choose from for mayor.

    An investigation by the daily newspaper O Estado de S. Paulo found that 2,512 of the 5,568 municipalities, or 45 percent, only have white candidates for mayor. Meanwhile, in the whole country, 65 percent of mayoral candidates are white despite only 48 percent of the country identifying as white, according to the 2010 census.

     Even cities where people of color are the overwhelming majority — such as Jandaíra in the northeastern state of Bahia, where 90 percent of people identify as non-white — white candidates exclusively are running for mayor.

    The figures come directly from the country’s electoral authority, known as the TSE, which is tracking the race of the candidates in municipal elections for the first time.

    Election day in Brazil - Marcelo Camargo ABr

     In the 2014 general election the TSE found that 75 percent of those elected were white. The figure is even higher for the posts of house representative, 80 percent, and senator, 82 percent.

    As in U.S. politics, money plays a big role in Brazilian elections. White candidates have also successfully raised more money than candidates of color, to the tune of 65 percent more, greatly improving their chances of winning.

    Tom Nascimento, a Black man who heads the culture office in city of Santa Luzia, told Estado that the reason for this is simple: racism.

    He argues the country lives under “whiteitude,” or white supremacy, where white ideals reign supreme.

    Although racial dynamics in Brazil are distinct from those in places such as the United States and Canada, racism and social inclusion is a very real and perceptible problem in Brazil.

    Earlier this year, the government of Michel Temer faced heavy criticism for naming an all-white, all-male cabinet. One white woman has accepted a cabinet post since then.

    The first round of municipal elections will take place on October 2, with a second round held on October 30 where necessary.





    • Show Comments (0)

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

    comment *

    • name *

    • email *

    • website *


    You May Also Like

    Brazilian president received with flowers in China by Beto Barata ABr

    Concession to Rousseff Generates Tension at Brazil’s New Government Coalition

    On his first official trip after assuming Brazil’s Presidency, Michel Temer is in Shanghai, ...

    Lula, Brazil’s Ex-president, One Step Closer to Jail

    Brazil’s Supreme Court approved a request to probe former President Luiz Inácio Lula da ...

    Antonio Palocci arrested by Brazil's Federal Police

    The Noose Is Tightening for Brazil’s Workers Party

    A medical doctor by training, Antonio Palocci was Brazilian former president Luiz Inácio Lula ...

    Protesters clash with police during Brazil's general strike - Tomaz Silva/ABr

    The 35 Million-Strong General Strike that Stopped Brazil in Its Tracks

    Amid record levels of unemployment and a terribly unpopular government, unions and citizens from ...

    João Doria, the new mayor elect of São Paulo

    Brazilian Voters Crush Lula’s Party in the Municipal Elections

    The municipal elections this Sunday, in Brazil, were a disaster for former president Luiz ...

    Dom Hélder Pessoa Câmara, who died in 1999, was an advocate for Liberation Theology. He was the Archbishop of Olinda and Recife

    What the World Can Learn from a Moribund Liberation Theology

    This June saw the passing of two of our generation’s most fascinating and controversial ...

    Protesters ask for the ousting of Brazilian president and congress

    Bar Association and People in the Streets Call for Brazil President’s Ouster

    After overseeing president Dilma Rousseff’s ouster and now, embroiled in a series of bribe ...

    Race Speaks Louder than Class in Brazil

    The most recent research on race relations in Brazil disproves the view that class ...

    Eduardo Cunha leaves House after being impeached - Fabio Rodrigues Pozzebom

    The Man Who Started Brazil President’s Impeachment Has Now Been Impeached Himself

    Brazil’s former president of the chamber of deputies and mastermind of President Dilma Rousseff’s ...