Israel in Brazil

Brazil’s far-right presidential candidate divides Jewish voters

While many Brazilian Jews abhor Jair Bolsonaro’s praise for military regime and divisive rhetoric, others praise his pro-Israel bonafides

27 October 2018

Gabriela Pszczol Krebs is not alone in her mixed feelings about Brazil’s presidential election runoff, pitting the far-right populist Jair Bolsonaro against the leftist Workers’ Party candidate Fernando Haddad.

“Both of them have ideas that I abominate and feel revulsion for,” Krebs, 44, a psychoanalyst from Rio, told JTA. She has decided to cast a “none of the above” option. “One will win, but not with my help. It’s my form of protest.”

Unlike Krebs, most Brazilian Jews have apparently chosen to take a more active role in what seems the most polarized election ever in the world’s fourth-largest democracy. Brazil is still struggling to leave behind its worst-ever recession and shake off the vestiges of an epic corruption scandal that hit the highest levels of government and business.