Thousands of Brazilians once again filled Paulista Avenue this past Sunday in the city of São Paulo to demand an end to the Michel Temer regime and for new elections to be held immediately.
“This government is illegitimate and we want direct elections now. This is a moment of resistance. If the coup leaders establish themselves (in power), the price will be high,” Guilherme Boulos, a leading figure in the anti-coup demonstrations, told reporters.
President Michel Temer was installed after Congress voted to oust democratically-elected President Dilma Rousseff. He has presided over a rollback in social gains and programs.
Temer’s government is composed of right-wing ministers and seeks to implement a neoliberal program. A bill presented by Temer is currently before the lower house of Congress. It proposes a 20-year freeze in government spending in social areas.
“The unelected Temer government offers Brazil an agenda that promotes job insecurity and opens the door to unbridled outsourcing … These actions will bring the country back to the eighteenth century and will bring an unprecedented period of setbacks,” said Adilson Araújo, head of the Workers Federation of Brazil.
Sunday’s rally and march was the latest in a series of public events called by social movements and supporters of the ousted president. As in other protests, police used repression to try to intimidate demonstrators.
During last week’s demonstration, military police fired teargas just as people began to disperse and demonstrators headed for metro entrances.
During this Sunday’s protest, police attacked the crowd with batons after they chanted for the end of the military police.
“Military police are for war, not to protect the people,” said Senator Lindbergh Farias, who said he had moved a motion in Congress to dissolve the military police.
Another demonstration will be held this coming Sunday and a general strike has been called for September 22.
“We will not leave the streets until we bring down this latest coup,” said Luiza Erundina, a federal lawmaker who is running for mayor of São Paulo.