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January 22nd, 2018

Legislative Newsletter - Edition 076

Politics under judgment

After two weeks, the nomination of Cristiane Brasil for the Ministry of Labor is not yet concluded.

Legislative Newsletter - Edition 076

After two weeks, the nomination of Cristiane Brasil for the Ministry of Labor is not yet concluded. At dawn, of this Monday, 22, the president of the Federal Supreme Court (STF), Carmen Lúcia, suspended the deputy nomination, after labor lawyers appeals. These challenged the decision of the Supreme Court of Justice (STJ) that allowed Brasil's possession. The Planalto had already scheduled a discreet ceremony for her on Monday, 22. But with the decision of the Minister Carmen Lúcia, the appointment is suspended. The magistrate gave 48 hours to the parts to manifest on the matter and asked the Attorney General's Office to pronounce on the matter.

Even with such controversy, the Planalto did not manifest any movement for a possible replacement for Brasil. The PTB itself is categorical in the appointment of the Minister. Recalling that the party belongs to a parliamentary bloc that also brings together PROS, PSL and PRP parties. It is important to keep them all together and close to the base. Their support is essential to the Pension Reform, the government's main proposal of the year.

About the vacant chair for Minister of Industry, Foreign Trade and Services (MDIC) some names have been brought up in Brasilia, but nothing concrete. We emphasize that former Minister Marcos Pereira was indicated by PRB. It is possible that the next name will be indicated, once again, by that party.

In relation to the Pension Reform, the negotiations are in full. Last week, President Michel Temer met with several leaders of the evangelical bloc, seeking support for the cause; in addition to the negotiations carried out by Deputy Rodrigo Maia (DEM/RJ) and the Secretary of Government, Carlos Marun.

Last week, Marun ruled out the possibility of another postponement of the vote on the proposal, currently scheduled to begin on February the 19th. Such statement indicates that the government is in the "make or break" mood regarding the Pension Reform. It indicates that the Planalto is close to the number of votes required for the approval of the matter in the Chamber of Deputies, 308 votes. However, Temer has already spoken on voting the issue in November after the general election which will take place October. It would be the government last effort in this legislature. This is because, voting for something unpopular after general-elections would not be risky for those seeking re-election. However, there is still no consensus on this possibility.

This week, negotiations continue, though without the presence of Temer. He is off to Switzerland attending the World Economic Forum. There, the president wants to demonstrate to the international community that the country "has overcome the crisis and is growing again"; in addition to reinforcing the government's effort to approve the Pension Reform in the National Congress. Temer’s commission includes ministers Henrique Meirelles (Treasury), Moreira Franco (General Secretariat), Fernando Coelho (Mining and Energy), Blairo Maggi (Agriculture) and Ricardo Barros (Health).

Another highlight of the week is the trial of former President Lula that will take place in Porto Alegre on the 24th. The 8th Criminal Court of the 4th Federal Regional Court (TRF-4) will decide whether to absolve or maintain the conviction. A sentence of nine years and six months in prison for corruption and money laundering in the triplex case, determined by federal judge Sergio Moro.

After the decision of TRF-4 and possible appeals, it is that, in fact, Lula may be incarcerated and become ineligible in 2018. In case his conviction is confirmed, his name will fall under the Clean Sheet Act, what may change the whole political scenario for 2018 elections.