It’s been decided. Of Brazil’s 81 senators, 55 have voted to put President Dilma Rousseff on trial over allegations that she illegally manipulated the country’s budget to hide a growing fiscal deficit. The remaining 22 senators voted against.
About 6,000 supporters of impeachment chanted “Out with Dilma” outside the congressional halls, while police used pepper spray to disperse gangs of Rousseff supporters. One arrest was made for inciting violence.
Vice President Michel Temer will become president for up to six months pending a decision to remove President Rousseff from office permanently. A two-thirds majority is required to remove President Rousseff permanently at the end of the trial. Temer would remain president until 2018 elections.
Rousseff’s presidency has been damaged by scandals, political stalling and a sharp economic downturn that has the latest unemployment count at 11,000,000.