Edson Fachin, the chairman of the country's electoral court, warned on Wednesday (July 6) that Brazil could encounter a more serious incident than the attack on the US Capitol on January 6, 2021, in the run-up to the October presidential election.
His comments come in response to the most recent polls, which indicate that Jair Bolsonaro, the far-right president of Brazil, is trailing former president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva in the race for the presidency.
Jair Bolsonaro, full name Jair Messias Bolsonaro, was born in Campinas, Brazil, on March 21, 1955. He became president of Brazil in October 2018. Bolsonaro, a former army captain and right-wing nationalist who supported law and order and expressed admiration for the military government that ruled Brazil from 1964 to 1985, was elected president on a populist anti-establishment wave sparked by the massive Petrobras scandal that had tarnished much of the nation's political class.
Without providing any evidence, Bolsonaro has questioned the electoral process, even threatening to annul an unfavorable result.
"We may experience an episode even more severe than the Jan 6 (attack) on the Capitol," Fachin said during a presentation at the Wilson Center in Washington.
As recalled, a mob of supporters of U.S. President Donald Trump attacked the Capitol Building in Washington, D.C. Trump's supporters sought to overturn his defeat in the 2020 presidential election by disrupting the joint session of Congress assembled to count electoral votes that would formalize the victory of President-elect Joe Biden.
The Capitol Complex was locked down and lawmakers and staff were evacuated as rioters assaulted law enforcement officers, vandalized property, and occupied the building for several hours. Five people died either shortly before, during, or following the event: one was shot by Capitol Police, another died of a drug overdose, and three died of natural causes. Many people were injured, including 138 police officers. Four officers who responded to the attack died by suicide within seven months.
Fachin also issued a warning that he would not tolerate any meddling in the voting process. He insisted that the military's participation in the presidential election must be constructive and never interfere.
To guarantee enhanced security for the voting process, the electoral court established a transparency commission earlier this year, which included members of numerous governmental organizations, including the military.
Military officials have generally stated that the armed forces will respect the outcome of any election. However, several military leaders have agreed with Bolsonaro's remarks regarding potential flaws in Brazil's electoral system.
"Evidently, we will not accept this type of circumstance. Collaboration yes, intervention never," Fachin said.