October 31, 2022 - Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva narrowly defeated President Jair Bolsonaro, marking a stunning comeback for the former president. Official results show Lula has secured 50.9% of the vote to Bolsonaro’s 49.1%, with 99.9% of ballots counted.
The presidential runoff between incumbent Bolsonaro, 67, and former President Luiz da Silva, 77, became the most crucial election since the country’s dictatorship collapsed in 1985.
“Today, the only winner is the Brazilian people,” da Silva said in a speech. “This isn’t a victory of mine or the Workers’ Party, nor the parties that supported me in campaign. It’s the victory of a democratic movement that formed above political parties, personal interests and ideologies so that democracy came out victorious.”
Bolsonaro’s administration has faced controversy in Brazil and abroad: his widely criticized handling of the COVID-19 pandemic, his policies on deforestation in the Amazon and his attacks on the country’s electoral system -- alleging he could only lose by voter fraud.
Just over 2 million votes separated the two candidates; the previous closest race, in 2014, was decided by a margin of roughly 3.5 million votes.
In April, da Silva picked centre-right Geraldo Alckmin, a former rival, as his running mate. Da Silva’s inauguration will take place on January 1.