A Senate committee that has for months investigated Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro and his government’s handling of the pandemic presents its findings today and will reportedly recommend that Bolsonaro be charged (NYT) with crimes against humanity. Dozens of other people could also face criminal charges. For any charges to officially move forward, they would need to be approved (Reuters) by a prosecutor general Bolsonaro appointed.
The Senate investigation stands out globally for its detailed airing of a government’s mishandling of the pandemic. The Brazilian government’s missteps include pushing unproven medications and spurning physical-distancing guidelines. Bolsonaro’s popularity has sunk (AP) as the investigation revealed allegations of bribery in government vaccine procurement.
“The major impact of the investigation is political, because it generated tons of news that certainly will be used by campaign strategists next year,” Arko Advice’s Thiago de Aragao tells the Associated Press.
“Bolsonaro also has denigrated scientific expertise throughout the pandemic, polarizing the response and undermining public health efforts,” CFR’s Joshua Kurlantzick writes.