Keep Us Strong WikiLeaks logo

Currently released so far... 5408 / 251,287

Articles

Browse latest releases

Browse by creation date

Browse by origin

A B C D F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W Y Z

Browse by tag

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
QA
YM YI YE

Browse by classification

Community resources

courage is contagious

Viewing cable 06BRASILIA1961, PERNAMBUCO PMDB LEADER FORESEES DIFFICULT LULA SECOND

If you are new to these pages, please read an introduction on the structure of a cable as well as how to discuss them with others. See also the FAQs

Understanding cables
Every cable message consists of three parts:
  • The top box shows each cables unique reference number, when and by whom it originally was sent, and what its initial classification was.
  • The middle box contains the header information that is associated with the cable. It includes information about the receiver(s) as well as a general subject.
  • The bottom box presents the body of the cable. The opening can contain a more specific subject, references to other cables (browse by origin to find them) or additional comment. This is followed by the main contents of the cable: a summary, a collection of specific topics and a comment section.
To understand the justification used for the classification of each cable, please use this WikiSource article as reference.

Discussing cables
If you find meaningful or important information in a cable, please link directly to its unique reference number. Linking to a specific paragraph in the body of a cable is also possible by copying the appropriate link (to be found at theparagraph symbol). Please mark messages for social networking services like Twitter with the hash tags #cablegate and a hash containing the reference ID e.g. #06BRASILIA1961.
Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
06BRASILIA1961 2006-09-15 18:06 2011-03-05 00:12 UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY Embassy Brasilia
VZCZCXRO4870
RR RUEHRG
DE RUEHBR #1961/01 2581817
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 151817Z SEP 06
FM AMEMBASSY BRASILIA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 6667
INFO RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC
RUEHRG/AMCONSUL RECIFE 5447
RUEHSO/AMCONSUL SAO PAULO 8047
RUEHRI/AMCONSUL RIO DE JANEIRO 2876
RUEHBU/AMEMBASSY BUENOS AIRES 4263
RUEHMN/AMEMBASSY MONTEVIDEO 6459
RUEHAC/AMEMBASSY ASUNCION 5658
RUEHSG/AMEMBASSY SANTIAGO 5775
UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 BRASILIA 001961 
 
SIPDIS 
 
SENSITIVE 
NOT FOR INTERNET 
SIPDIS 
 
E.O. 12958: N/A 
TAGS: PGOV PREL ECON BR
SUBJECT:  PERNAMBUCO PMDB LEADER FORESEES DIFFICULT LULA SECOND 
TERM 
 
 
1. (SBU) Summary: The re-election of President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva will be a "tragedy" and his government will perform so badly he may not finish his term of office, according to Pernambuco's former Governor Jarbas Vasconcelos, (strictly protect), a veteran PMDB (Party of the Brazilian Democratic Movement) politician from Pernambuco state and candidate for Senate. Jarbas did not specify how Lula4s second term might end prematurely, but he described a discouraging political landscape during a meeting with visiting Embassy poloff and Recife Principal Officer on September 5. Jarbas said he had no doubt that Lula knew of all the corruption scandals that erupted during his first term, but most voters do not care enough about corruption to reject Lula at the ballot box, in spite of relentless media attacks on him. He dismissed predictions of a deep reduction in the PT (Workers Party) seats in Congress, but said Lula will have a hard time working with the new Congress, which will be against him. Most of Jarbas's own party, the PMDB, is "rotten," he said, but he explained that he did not feel he had a place in another party. Polling shows Jarbas should easily win the senate seat being vacated by Jose Jorge, opposition presidential candidate Geraldo Alckmin's running mate. This report was prepared by visiting Embassy Poloff in Recife and cleared with AmConsul Recife. End summary 

2. (SBU) The re-election of President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva will be a "tragedy" and his government will be so bad that he may not finish his term of office, according to former two-term Pernambuco governor Jarbas Vasconcelos, now running for the Senate. Jarbas did not specify how Lula4s second term might end prematurely, but he described a discouraging national political landscape during a meeting with Recife Principal Officer and visiting Embassy Poloff on September 5. Jarbas retold a bit of the overthrow of Joao Goulart by the Brazilian military in 1964, noting that Goulart had sown the seeds of his government's demise by undermining two pillars that were fundamental to military support: discipline and hierarchy. But Jarbas said the end was provoked by two editorials in leading daily "O Estado de Sao Paulo." By comparison, he noted, Lula has survived a relentless and ongoing media attack and is heading for re-election. Jarbas did not say how Lula might be forced out before the end of his second term, but he seemed to be suggesting it would be a resignation in the face of overwhelming opposition. 

3. (SBU) Jarbas said he believed that Lula will win re-election in the first round, but foresaw a very poor relationship with congress. He predicted the PMDB, the PFL (Party of the Liberal Front) and PSDB (Party of Brazilian Social Democracy) would each have 17 senators, or 51 out of 81 senate seats. He said Lula would not be able to get along with such a congress. Part of the PMDB supports the Lula government, while another faction remains in opposition; Jarbas did not say how many of the PMDB senators would be pro-government and how many opposition. Jarbas also said the PSOL (Party of Solidarity and Liberty), the far left party of Heloisa Helena, the presidential candidate polling third at about ten percent, would decline after the election. 

4. (SBU) Many voters do not care enough about the corruption scandals of Lula4s first term, Jarbas said, and they will vote for Lula. Many of Lula4s supporters, especially those with little education, will vote loyally for the PT by choosing candidates on the ballot whose numbers start with 13, the PT's number, he explained. Because of this loyalty to the PT among the poor, Jarbas said the PT block in Congress, currently just over 90 federal deputies and senators, will not be reduced by more than 10 or 15 seats. Jarbas also said Lula was running a good campaign, while Alckmin's campaign was weak. The only one affected locally by corruption charges, in Jarbas' view, is Severino Cavalcanti, a Pernambuco politician who was forced to resign from the presidency of the Chamber of Deputies for taking bribes from the congressional cafeteria concession. Jarbas expected an electoral defeat for him. 

5. (SBU) While most of the PMDB remains in Lula's camp, Jarbas does not moderate his anti-Lula stance. He was not always an anti-Lulista: he said he recommended the PMDB cooperate with Lula in 2003 when Lula first took office, but the PMDB refused. Jarbas, who is as critical of his own party as he is of the Lula government, said that refusal was strong evidence that the PMDB acted out of self-interest regardless of what was good for Brazil. Jarbas said the majority of the PMDB was "rotten," and an ideological grab-bag ("a sack of cats"). Still, he said he has not joined another party because he does not have a PSDB "profile," and he does not feel close enough to any other party to switch. (Jarbas was elected governor of Pernambuco in 1998 and re-elected in 2002 in the same 

BRASILIA 00001961 002 OF 002 

election that brought Lula to power. He resigned recently to run for the Senate.) 

6. (SBU) Jarbas added that in 2003 he became aware of extensive corruption at a national level and warned his state government administrators to be on guard against it in Pernambuco. Lula was fully aware of all the corruption scandals, Jarbas was certain, because there was rampant cronyism. 

7. (U) Jarbas was confident of his own election to the senate and said his polling shows he is at 66 percent with Pernambuco voters. 

8. (SBU) Comment: Some of Jarbas' observations struck us as reasonable, except for the stunning and rather mysterious prediction that Lula might not finish his second term. Coming from such a level-headed and well-respected politician, Jarbas's forecast of stormy political weather ahead is a warning that political gridlock could revisit Brazil in one form or another in a second Lula presidency. 

9. (SBU) Comment continued. Given Jarbas' long-time role in Northeast politics and his good relations with Lula when he was governor, his frank and negative comments came as a surprise. He takes the role of the realist in politics, but he made very clear that he did not condone corrupt practices in any party. He will have an interesting role to play in the Senate, and he believes that his vice governor, Jose Mendonca Filho, will take the election in Pernambuco and be his surrogate there. 

SOBEL