Brazil leader's popularity sinks in political crisis: poll

Brazil's President Dilma Rousseff waves during a meeting with governors at Alvorada Palace in Brasilia, July 30, 2015. REUTERS/Ueslei Marcelino (Reuters)
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BRASILIA (Reuters) - President Dilma Rousseff's approval rating remains at rock bottom while a growing number of Brazilians want to see her impeached and fewer think she will see the end of her term, according to a poll published on Thursday. With a huge corruption scandal rocking her government and Brazil sliding into its worst economic downturn in 25 years, pollster Datafolha said Rousseff's approval rating has fallen to 8 percent, close to the 7.7 percent reported in another recent survey. The number of Brazilians that consider her administration "bad" or "very bad" touched 71 percent, up from 65 percent in the previous Datafolha poll in June. Two in every three respondents, or 66 percent, said Rousseff should face an impeachment process, up from 63 percent in an April poll. While a majority of Brazilians still expect to see the leftist leader serve out her term, Datafolha said 38 percent now see her being impeached, up from 29 percent in April. Rousseff's popularity is the lowest for any Brazilian president since Datafolha started polling, even lower that of Fernando Collor de Mello in 1992 as he faced impeachment for corruption. Just six months into her second term, she is facing mounting calls for her impeachment. Her adversaries are waiting for a nationwide protest against her government on Aug. 16 to gauge popular sentiment and a court ruling on her administration's accounts before deciding whether to seek her impeachment. Political uncertainty has weakened the Brazilian currency to 12-year lows. The real was trading 3.51 to the dollar on Thursday morning. In a sign that Rousseff is losing support in her governing coalition, the lower house of Congress overwhelmingly passed a bill on Wednesday to raise the wages of some public employees, a blow to her efforts close a gaping fiscal gap. The Datafolha poll of 3,358 respondents was carried out between Tuesday and Wednesday and published by newspaper Folha de S. Paulo. (Reporting by Silvio Cascione and Anthony Boadle; Editing by Robin Pomeroy and Meredith Mazzilli)

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