- Donald Trump allies met aides to defeated Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, The Washington Post reported.
- Steve Bannon has reportedly advised Bolsonaro to contest his defeat.
- But a legal challenge to the election by Bolsonaro’s party was met with a hefty fine.
Donald Trump allies have held discussions with aides to Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro as he seeks to contest his defeat in last month’s presidential election, The Washington Post reported.
According to the Post, Eduardo Bolsonaro, a senator and the Brazilian president’s son, recently visited Mar-a-Lago, where he met with Trump, and on the same trip also spoke with Steve Bannon and Jason Miller.
On Wednesday, Eduardo Bolsonaro posted a video on Twitter in which Bannon, a longtime adviser to former President Donald Trump, praised protests in Brazil over Bolsonaro’s defeat, and stirred conspiracy theories about the use of voting machines to steal elections.
“What’s happening in Brazil is a world event,” Bannon told The Post. “The people are saying they’ve been grossly disenfranchised. [The movement] has moved beyond the Bolsonaro’s in the way that in the U.S. it has moved beyond Trump.”
Bolsonaro was defeated in the October 30 vote by leftist former President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, known as Lula, and though he did not concede, he seemed to be stepping aside to allow the presidential transition to go ahead.
But on Tuesday Bolsonaro formally challenged the election results, disputing his loss after weeks of silence, and demanded that votes cast on some voting machines be thrown out due to a software issue.
Trump and his allies famously refused to concede defeat after the 2020 US presidential election, baselessly claiming that victory had been stolen from him, partly as a result of a plot using voting machines.
Bannon played a key role in stirring election fraud claims in 2020, and was sentenced to four months in jail by a federal judge for refusing to comply with a subpoena to testify before the congressional panel probing the January 6 Capitol riot.
Bolsonaro’s case doesn’t appear to be off to a good start.
On Wednesday, the head of Brazil’s electoral court rejected an attempt by Bolsonaro’s far-right Liberal Party to overturn the results, while also fining parties in Bolsonaro’s coalition the equivalent of $4.3m for what the court described as bad faith litigation.
Bolsonaro’s supporters have held protests since his defeat, blocking roads and calling for the army to intervene to stop Lula from taking office.
Trump and Bolsonaro were close allies during their time in office, with both championing a brash style of right-wing populism.