The son of Lebanese migrants - Vice President Michel Temer will take the helm of the world’s fifth-most populous nation on Thursday after Brazil’s Senate voted to put President Dilma Rousseff on trial for breaking budgetary laws.
While Rousseff is known for her ‘in-your-face’ style, those who have worked with Temer say he is serene and possesses a rare trait in Brazilian politics - the patience to listen to allies and adversaries alike.
The challenge before him is daunting. Brazil is mired in its worst recession since the 1930s and he will have to make rapid moves to restore confidence. Rousseff and her ruling Workers Party (PT) have branded Temer a traitor and say that impeachment amounts to a coup.
Temer bitterly broke with Rousseff five months ago, accusing her of sidelining him. He has already chosen several key ministers who are heavy hitters in Brazil’s political and business classes and will clearly take a more liberal economic approach than the leftist Rousseff.
He honed his craft over several years in Brazil’s bare-knuckle lower house of Congress, where he was an ally to both centrist President Fernando Henrique Cardoso and leftist leader Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva.
Temer, 75, earned a reputation for remaining above the fray. He rarely raises his voice, is said not to curse and refrains from the wild gesticulation and theatrics his peers employ during debates.
“Temer is assertive, but not aggressive. He speaks, but not too much. He’s restrained. Yet he has shown he can negotiate with anyone, on the right or left,” said Eliane Cantanhede, a political commentator with the Estado de S.Paulo newspaper and Globo TV who has covered the vice president for decades.
Supporters enthused that this would enable him to get things done.
“He builds political bridges and will be able to win the congressional support to carry out the reforms needed to revive our economy and political system,” said Deputy Darcisio Perondi, a member of Temer’s Brazilian Democratic Movement Party (PMDB) who has known the vice president for two decades.
But there are some doubts even among those eager to see a change.
Though Brazil’s stock markets and currency rallied at the prospect of a business-friendly Temer government, some investors have voiced concern at his low-profile leadership style.
They worry he will not be assertive enough to control a politically chaotic moment, and that he will not be able to withstand the ferocious opposition the PT has vowed awaits what it considers to be an illegitimate government.
نستخدم ملفات الكوكيز لنسهل عليك استخدام مواقعنا الإلكترونية ونكيف المحتوى والإعلانات وفقا لمتطلباتك واحتياجاتك الخاصة، لتوفير ميزات وسائل التواصل الاجتماعية ولتحليل حركة المرور لدينا...اعرف أكثر