Lula Approval Ratings Top Bolsonaro, Trail His Previous Terms

(Bloomberg) -- Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva’s approval ratings beat that of his predecessor Jair Bolsonaro but were smaller than those in his first two terms, according to a poll comparing the initial months of each administration.

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About 41% of Brazilians rated the three-month-old leftist government great or good, while 24% considered it bad or terrible, according to the Ipec survey published on Sunday by the newspaper O Globo. Another 30% have neither a positive nor negative view.

At the same point in his presidency in March 2019, Bolsonaro was evaluated positively by 34% of the population, seven percentage points less than Lula. But the leftist president’s rating was lower than the 51% positive ratings he received in March 2003 for his first term, as well as the 49% in March 2007, during his second term.

Lula, who was investigated for alleged bribes and mishandling of funds and served a prison sentence in 2018, beat the conservative Bolsonaro in last year’s election by less than two percentage points, the closest race in Brazil’s history. The first days at the presidential palace were troubled, as Bolsonaro’s supporters who demanded a military intervention to stop the new government from taking office held riots.

Lula also faces the mistrust of some investors, due to his repeated attacks on central bank head Roberto Campos Neto over Brazil’s high interest rates.

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