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PSG forward Neymar supports right-wing president Jair Bolsonaro in Brazil’s general election

Brazil’s football superstar posted a video supporting Brazil’s president as the first round in the presidential election looms.

Update:
This video screen grab handout released on September 29, 2022, by The official Twitter account of Brazilian Minister of Communications Fabio Faria shows Brazilian superstar Neymar flashing the V sign at an undisclosed location. - Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro got a celebrity endorsement Thursday for his re-election bid from football superstar Neymar, who posted a video on TikTok of himself dancing to a pro-Bolsonaro campaign song. (Photo by Handout / @fabiofaria official twitter account / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - MANDATORY CREDIT "AFP PHOTO / Official Twitter account of Brazilian Minister of Communications Fabio Faria" - NO MARKETING - NO ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS - DISTRIBUTED AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS
HANDOUTAFP

With elections looming Brazil’s incumbent president, Jair Bolsonaro, is looking for any support he can muster. Recent polling suggests his main rival, former president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, has a 13 percentage point lead going into the first round of voting on Sunday.

A recent TikTok video from football icon Neymar could be the shot in the arm Bolsonaro’s campaign needs. It features the PSG winger dancing along to campaign music and slogans for his reelection campaign.

“Vote, vote, and press ‘confirm’ for 22, that’s Bolsonaro,” goes the song, a reference to Brazil’s electronic voting machines.

This isn’t the first time Neymar has voiced his support for Bolsonaro. Back in 2019, Neymar featured in a video with Bolsonaro and right-wing Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Who is Jair Bolsonaro?

Bolsonaro first came to power in January 2019. His background was in the Brazilian army, where he reached the rank of captain. After leaving the army he became a member of Congress, sitting since 1990.

His support comes mainly from supporters of traditional values and the army. He opposes same-sex marriage, abortion, and homosexuality. He has reduced protections for the Amazon rainforest, leading to record deforestation five times the size of New York City in just the first six months of 2022.

He has consistently praised Brazil’s military dictatorship, a period of time from 1964 to 1985. There are concerns he will not accept the result of the election if he were to lose.

His response to the covid-19 pandemic has widely been criticised, consistently pushing back against measures to restrict the virus. Our World in Data believes that more than 686,000 people have died from the disease in Brazil, the second highest number in the world. This has led to Bolsonaro potentially facing prison.

Bolsonaro graciously took the opportunity to conduct campaigning while visiting the funeral of Queen Elizabeth II.

“We’re on the right path,” he told his supporters from the balcony of the Brazilian embassy.