Brazil’s Superior Electoral Court unanimously voted Thursday (Dec. 13) to shelve a case in which the coalition led by the PT (Workers’ Party) requested Jair Bolsonaro to be banned from running for president along with his running mate Hamilton Mourão, over abuse of economic power during their campaign. The case involved executive Luciano Hang, owner of the Havan chain.
In the motion, the PT argues that Bolsonaro did not report an amount received by the executive, who is said to have threatened to fire employees who did not vote for Bolsonaro, of the Social Liberal Party (PSL).
The PT, which had Fernando Haddad as its presidential hopeful, mentioned incidents in which Hang is believed to have forced employees to go to work wearing pro-Bolsonaro shirts and talked about job losses that would certainly take place in case the PT won the elections.
In the case, first brought under scrutiny on December 4 and concluded today after the votes of Justices Edson Fachin and Rosa Weber, the court decided there was not overwhelming evidence of abuse, especially considering the serious consequences of the decision—turning the winning ticket invalid.
Before casting his vote, Justice Jorge Mussi said “in order for abuse of power to be detected, there must be seriousness of the facts must be unequivocally proved,” which did not take place in a “robust and concrete” fashion in the case with Havan stores.
In addition to Rosa Weber and Fachin, Justices Og Fernandes, Admar Gonzaga, Tarcísio Vieira, and Luís Roberto Barroso backed Mussi’s decision.