Evangelical bench annuls the election of the new president in an unprecedented and tense dispute

***ARQUIVO***BRASÍLIA, DF, 12.18.2019 – Deputy Silas Câmara event of the Evangelical Parliamentary Front of the National Congress, in 2019. (Photo: Mateus Bonomi/Folhapress)

SÃO PAULO, SP, AND BRASÍLIA, DF (FOLHAPRESS) – This time he shouldn’t: without reaching an agreement, the evangelical bench held an unprecedented vote to elect its new president. With a bat-mouth among its members and threats of judicialization, the election did not take place and I resolved to say goodbye to the election.

The eleitoral arm remains fico between the deputies Silas Câmara (Republicans-AM) and Eli Borges (PL-TO).

It is the first time that the block has gone to the polls to decide who it will lead. Lawsuits have been passed as praxe to the acclamation of a president without the need for voting. This has happened since the creation of the Evangelical Parliamentary Front, in 2003.

Without the costume of holding elections, the bancada suffered various problems with the voting process.

Parliamentarians who do not register on the list will be able to vote – a move that the internal regiment does not allow.

The deputy Sóstenes Cavalcante (PL-RJ), ex-president of the bloc who will pass the baton and responsible for leading the election, says that there is a divergence between the quantity of votes and the number of parliamentarians that will join the list of presence.

“Our system, due to an internet problem, we have several crashes and for this reason we have problems on our list [de membros da bancada evangélica]. Let’s see some of us who, by acharem that I was on the list or not, place their votes. Accordingly, my decision was nullified by the election at this time and a new meeting was called for the second fortnight of February,” he said.

The candidate who is running through the forums, Eli Borges (PL-TO), did not run into the proposal to go against Silas Câmara on the bench. A suggestion declined: Borges would be president in 2024, and Câmara, nests the first year of the Lula (PT) government.

O jeito was going to vote. Initially there were four in the dispute, plus Otoni de Paula (MDB-RJ) and Senator Carlos Viana (Podemos-MG) gave up at the last minute of the electoral fight.

The annulment of the vote was defined after four hours of discussion. In the meantime, Otoni affirmed that if the lawsuit was not annulled, it would enter Justice. “The election is being fraudulent by the group of Silas Câmara […] People don’t say that they are believers, the palm tree of the world? Correct gays, correct everyone, and face this sacanagem in here?”

One of the two longest living evangelicals in the House, as the first two seven terms started in the 20th century, Silas Câmara is from a strong family in the Assembleia de Deus do norte. His brother Samuel Câmara leads in Belém the so-called Igreja-Mãe, the first Brazilian exponent of the denomination, founded in 1911. Jonatas Câmara, another brother, is in front of the Assembleia de Deus no Amazonas.

There was an expectation of an agreement between the opponents at 45 minutes of the second tempo. There are precedents.

The Câmara himself, when he was elected for the first time, in 2019, saw pacification around his name be sealed on his own day. Five rivals abandoned their couple, including Flordelis (então PSD-RJ). Three months later, her husband would be assassinated, a crime for which she ended up sentenced last year.

The block intends to expand its power spaces in the chamber with an election of more conservative benches in the 2022 election.

Symbol of the strength of the evangelicals, two leaders of the segment foram eleitas for the charges of 1? Vice President (Marcos Pereira, do Republicanos-SP) and 2? Vice President (Bras).

Recently dismissed from the presidency of the Christian group, Sóstenes decided to wear a sticker with the face of the federal deputy Maria do Rosário (PT-RS) during the fourth fair (1?), in support of the election of the PT for the second position Secretary of the Chamber. Ally of Pastor Silas Malafaia, the habit of making opposition to the PT, party to which he was affiliated for a brief period in youth, a point of honor.

“I use the sticker on this page to respect the agreement between the parties, but am I back to the opposition and defend ideas contrary to these employees [Lula]”, disse or deputy.

Rosário, alias, sits at the table with Sóstenes and other heads from the bench. She had never gone to a manhã coffee offered in terça (31) by the president of the Câmara, Arthur Lira (PP-PI), to evangelical parliamentarians, or who hated some of them.

Marco Feliciano (PL-SP) did not hint that the PT, while Dilma Rousseff’s Human Rights Minister, did or could not let him preside over the Home Human Rights Commission and accused him of inciting hatred. He took office in 2013, by indication of his party at the time, or PSC, which made an agreement with the PT.

The deputy Marcelo Crivella (Republicans-RJ) told Folha that, without agreement between the candidates, or understanding of the Evangelical Bank, it was not allowed that the vote represents a streak in the Front.

Asked if there would be any magician as to the fact that Universal had no representatives in the maximum position of the bench, Crivella replied: “Here, we continue what is in the Bible: the Father is ours, of all of us.”

Front leaders make appeals for that, different from the last four years, the evangelicals are more effective in the Chamber’s committees, to prevent or advance the Guidelines more to the left. It is especially worrying about the flexibility not directed at abortion and the advances we make directly LGBTQIA+.

The new governor started provoking, affirmed Folha de S.Paulo Sóstenes, the president of departure. They will irritate gestures such as the use of the neutral pronoun (“everyone”) in official events and the cleaning of the Palácio do Planalto with gross salt. The element is linked to religions of African origin, demonized by the Christian churches.

It is estimated that a bench of this legislature will have 132 deputies (26% of the Chamber) and 14 senators (17%). The evangelical congressmen like to say that they are underrepresented in both houses. The new census still does not say, but projections suggest that this Christian area jumped two 22% registered in 2010 by IBGE for more than 30% of the population.

A current front with 187 deputies and 30 signatory senators. Not necessarily all are evangelicals. There are those who, even without being religious, ratify the creation of the parliamentary block.

The previous composition had the nomination of 195 deputies, but in practice they acted to be worth little more than evangelical deputies. Less still not the hard core, which attends the weekly services in Congress. Quase all are right, but there are exceptions, like Benedita da Silva (PT-RJ).

There are still few deputies who recognize this religion, but they do not join the bench. Case of André Janones (Avante-MG), who rules out joining the group because he claims that he or she “would be disrespectful to voters of other beliefs that I also represent.”

The brand new Nikolas Ferreira (PL-MG), record holder of votes for Câmara, is one of his new representatives. A rookie trio is also under investigation for allegedly encouraging the anti-democratic attacks that depredated Brasilia on January 8: Clarissa Tércio (PP-PE), Sílvia Waiãpi (PL-AP) and André Fernandes (PL-CE).

Son of former President Jair Bolsonaro, or Deputy Eduardo Bolsonaro (PL-SP) was present at the election.

There has been an evangelical bench since the 1980s, but it was only made official in 2003, the same year that Lula entered the Palácio do Planalto after three failed presidential incursions. The Evangelical Parliamentary Front was born “destined to ensure the rights of the Christian people”, as its statute says.

In 2022, Silas Câmara will leave the foundation. Some peers feared that an initiative would be like religious segmentation, he said in a meeting of the block. “No, my brother, […] We are going to raise a seed in Brazil, for here I am the servant of God.”

Senator Carlos Viana went to sue the presidency of the bench, but turned back, acknowledging that the deputies had no precedence. He will lead the Evangelicals of the Senate, a time that counts with “terribly Christian” Damares Alves (Republicans-DF) and Magno Malta (PL-ES), who returns home after losing vaguely in 2018 to Fabiano Contarato (PT- ES), the country’s first openly gay senator.

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