Latin America & Caribbean

Brazil media reacts to Dilma Rousseff removal

Dilma Rousseff. 31 Aug 2016 Image copyright AFP

The removal of President Dilma Rousseff, at the end of nine-month impeachment process, has come as no surprise to Brazil's media.

Hours before Wednesday's decision, local publications were already announcing her dismissal from office based on the speeches of senators made throughout the trial. Many politicians had openly declared that they would oust her.

Print editions of mainstream newspapers appeared with similar front covers on the day of the Senate vote.

"Poll shows Dilma's departure", anticipated daily O Estado de Sao Paulo.

Image copyright O Estado de S. Paulo

"The Senate reaches majority to impeach Dilma; Temer prepares to be sworn in", read the headline of Folha de Sao Paulo.

Image copyright Folha de S. Paulo

Surprise vote

When the result was confirmed, news outlets largely focused on the score of 61 to 20 votes. Two-thirds of the house, or 54 senators, were needed to remove her.

"Dilma Rousseff loses her presidential mandate," highlighted the website of daily Correio Braziliense.

Image copyright Correio Braziliense

There was surprise, noted by local media, when the head of the Supreme Federal Court, Ricardo Lewandowski, who presided over the trial, agreed to a request made by the defence and split the vote in two.

Appeal to court

After deciding for removal, senators unexpectedly voted for the maintenance of Rousseff's political rights. "Dilma can still stand in elections and hold public office," reported the online edition of newspaper O Globo.

The result provoked the ire of opposition senators who said they were ready "to appeal to the Supreme Court", according to a text published by website UOL.

Image copyright Website UOL

Some of Rousseff's supporters, such as Senator Lindbergh Farias, reacted from the Senate floor.

"Angry political right is unable to revoke Dilma's rights, only the mandate. This is more proof that there was no crime. It is a coup," tweeted Farias. (@LindbergFarias)

The "coup" argument was once again brought up during Ms Rousseff's first appearance after the vote.

Speaking to the press, she called the senate's decision "the second time she faces a coup d'etat in her lifetime" and said that senators "tore up the constitution".

Promising to "fight back", Ms Rousseff compared the impeachment process to an "indirect election", reported website G1.

Image copyright G1

She has previously accused the former Speaker of the lower house, Eduardo Cunha, of "conspiring" against her alongside now President Michel Temer.

Local media emphasised Mr Temer's "quick" swearing-in ceremony at the Senate. Less than three hours after the vote, his interim title was gone and he became Brazil's new official president.

Mr Temer is travelling to China later on Wednesday to attend a G20 meeting in China, The trip puts the country in a curious situation.

Brazil removed a president and would welcome two others on the same day, O Globo noted.

That's because the Speaker of the lower house, Congressman Rodrigo Maia, automatically becomes the acting commander-in-chief when Michel Temer is abroad. As reported by news magazine Veja, the country "no longer" has a vice-president.

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