Brazil and the U.S. need a pragmatic relationship, no matter who wins the election

August 4, 2020

An ideological link that exists today between Brasilia and Washington, and between the personalities of Presidents Donald Trump and Jair Bolsonaro, according to an article in O Globo, one of the most prominent newspapers in Brazil. Should Joe Biden win the presidency, that relationship will have to be based on more pragmatic considerations.  Analysts surveyed by GLOBO point out that the fact that the Bolsonaro government does not hide its preference for Trump would not necessarily be a problem if Biden wins.

Ford School professor Melvyn Levitsky was U.S. Ambassador to Brazil. He notes of Biden, ”He's very pragmatic. The big issue is that he will be under great pressure from his base on environmental and human rights issues. This can be further intensified if the House stays with the Democrats and the Senate, now with a Republican majority, is also won by the Democrats.” 

Levitsky says it will be up to Brazilian diplomats to set the tone for the reaction and bilateral relationship in an eventual Biden government, since the two countries may diverge on global stages such as the UN and the OAS.

“Brazil will also need to be more pragmatic and less ideological,” he says. 

You can read the article (in Portuguese) here.

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