Rousseff seizes second term, carrying forward 12 years of Workers’ Party administration for another four years.
According to the Brazilian Supreme Electoral Tribunal (TSE), Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff has won the Brazilian presidential elections with 51.45 percent of the vote compared to her political rival Aecio Neves who captured 48.55 percent, a difference of two million votes.
More than 142 million Brazilians have voted
Voting began at 8 a.m. and ended at 5 p.m. Voters also selected federal parliament and state governors.
More than 142 million Brazilians have voted in the country’s presidential election, marking the end to a dramatic campaign.
Some 15,000 soldiers have been deployed in 280 cities across Brazil to provide security, down from the 30,000 troops deployed during the October 5 runoff election.
Rousseff won the first-round vote with 41.6 percent versus 33.6 percent for Neves, a difference of eight million votes. Neves was endorsed a week ago by Marina Silva, a popular environmentalist who placed third with 22 million votes.
From tortured guerrilla to first female President of Brazil
As Brazil’s first female President, Rousseff was first elected in 2011. Born in 1947, she was raised in a middle-class household in Belo Horizonte.
In 1970 she was captured and imprisoned for three years where she was subjected to torture, including electric shocks, for her role in the underground resistance against the Brazilian military dictatorship.
Under her first presidential term, Brazil’s economy grew by an average of more than four percent each year, transitioning more than 30 million people out of poverty.
The incumbent focused her campaign message on expanding the social programs that reduced poverty and inequality in the country during her Workers’ Party 12-year rule.
n addition, she has promised to continue to invest in infrastructure, particularly in connecting important economic zones to ports by rail. She has said that she would like to bring universal broadband Internet access to the country.
Meanwhile, the loosing candidate Aeicio Neves had vowed to cut back on government spending, and implement austerity if elected.
* * *
Rousseff thanks support of the coalition and all Brazilians
President Dilma Rousseff greeted a crowd of enthusiastic supporters after her victory in Sunday’s elections. Dilma, the candidate for the Workers’ Party, emphasized that her government would focus on implementing the promises made during the campaign and on unifying the country.
Rousseff raised her voice when saying her government would launch an intense fight against impunity, which is the shield, she said, behind which corrupt officials hide.
”I am grateful with all the parties that supported me. I am grateful to all my cabinet members that have been behind me. I am extremely grateful with ex President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva.”
She said that Brazil is now open to debate the crucial issues to push forward the democracy of Brazil, and that this is the main commitment of her secon term as president of the country.
“Brazil is not divided. This is a time to construct new bridges,” Rousseff said.
Re-election means that the country has faith and hope in the person they have voted for a second term. “This has been the decision of the majority and I’m ready to rule in favor of the majorities.”
“Brazil is not divided. This is a time to construct new bridges, and for dialogue and for debate of ideas,” she said.
“The first commitment of my government is dialgoue, and instead of expanding the differences and creating opposition, I have faith that all the energy garnered during the mobilization has paved the way toward the construction of new bridges.”
Rousseff, who won the elections by over three million votes more than her rival Aecio Neves, was accompanied by Lula during her victory speech before thousands of followers.
“We have come to the end of an electoral dispute that intensely mobilized all the (policital and social) forces of our contry, and as victor of this historic election, I send my words of appreciation to all mi coalition comarades and my Vice President Michel Teme,” she added.
Her victory represents a continuation of policies implemented by Workers’ Party governments, which saw a great deal of investment in education, social programs, health and infrastructure. As a result she had the backing of social movements in this second round. With the election being so close, their support and ability to mobilize voters likely contributed to her victory.
In the second round, Dilma won 51.45 percent of the vote, beating her rival by over 2.5 million votes. She had won the first round of the elections with 41.6 percent of the vote. Brazilian law stipulates that a candidate must receive at least 50 percent of the votes in order to avoid a run off.
Upon learning of his defeat in today’s elections, Aecio Neves stated that he recognized the results of the election and congratulated Dilma on her victory.
“The greatest pritority is to unite Brazil,” said Neves after congratulating Rousseff for her victory.
Neves immediately accepted his defeat, and in doing so asked the president for unity after the most polarized elections in decades. “I consider that the greatest priority is to unite Brazil surrounding an honorable project that dignifies all Brazilians,” he said in Belo Horizonte immediately after the official results were made public.
Neves, who was accompanied by his wife Leticia Weber, said he called Rousseff to congratulate her for her electoral victory and “great success in governing the country” for a second term.
He also said that despite his defeat he was “feeling more alive than ever and a greater dreamer” and with “a feeling that we accomplished our role. I fought a good battle, I accomplished my mission and never lost faith.” Neves also thanked the millions of Brazilians who voted for him.