Home South AmericaBrasil Alesp’s new profile tends towards the center-right, says political scientist

Alesp’s new profile tends towards the center-right, says political scientist

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PL, PT and PSDB have bigger stands at Alesp

This Wednesday (15), the Legislative Assembly of São Paulo (Alesp) swore in the 94 state deputies elected and graduated in the 2022 elections. at 3pm.

Of the 94 elected, 32 will assume a seat in the Assembly for the first time and seven, who have already served their mandate in previous legislatures, are returning to the House. The expectation is that, with the new composition of the House, Governor Tarcísio de Freitas, from the Republicans, will have the facility to approve his projects.

“Tarcísio must find an assembly in which he will have no difficulty in making political compositions. It is a legislative assembly whose composition and political-partisan profile are more of the center-right and, when not, of the right”, said political scientist Bruno Silva, director of Projects of the Conscious Vote Movement.

“It’s an Alesp in which he [governador] will have a fairly consistent base. He is a new politician in São Paulo, an unknown figure, but he may have the support of 65 to 70 deputies. At least the expectation is of a base that contributes to its governability”, agreed the political scientist Maria do Socorro Braga, from the Federal University of São Carlos (Ufscar).

With that, Tarcísio should not find obstacles to approve projects that he defended in the campaign for the state government, such as the privatization of the Basic Sanitation Company of the State of São Paulo (Sabesp). “In the privatization projects that are on the agenda, such as the privatization of Sabesp and other companies, it is possible that he will find it easy, or at least have a good number of deputies supporting these agendas”, said Maria do Socorro.

“The priority guidelines that have been aired so far, based on what we have heard from strong figures within the government, could be fitted into three major themes. First, are the infrastructure issues, of which he [Tarcísio] boasted throughout the electoral process of having expertise at the national level due to his position as Minister of Infrastructure. This is one of the bottlenecks he wants to address, so much so that it has already generated some controversy, such as the privatization of the water issue”, highlighted Bruno Silva.

According to Silva, two topics that could also be voted on by Alesp are public safety and education.

Profile

Although the pro-government profile is expected to be maintained, the new Legislative Assembly has at least one difference in relation to the last legislatures: the loss of strength of the PSDB. After almost 30 years in power in São Paulo, and almost the same time in the presidency of Alesp, the PSDB lost four seats in the last elections.

From the party with the largest bench, the PSDB will now occupy the third place among those with the greatest representation in the São Paulo Assembly, with nine elected deputies. “The main point in which the current Alesp differs from the previous one is that the PSDB came out of the elections very weakened, as a whole, and lost not only seats in Alesp, but also [também] part of the control of important political aspects within the Legislative Branch”, stated the political scientist.

The largest bench will now be the PL, which elected 19 deputies, including André do Prado, the most quoted to assume the presidency of the House, after years of leading the PSDB. “It’s a changing of the guard, a relay of forces. The PSDB still has strength in São Paulo, but less and less expressive. And, on a national level, the party also came out of the elections weakened. With the PL taking over, there is a certain continuity there, I would say, because the PSDB has increasingly, over the years, moved away from the center and towards the right. The PL, in turn, is growing. It is a growth that comes from 2018 to here, [com o partido] trying to take over this PSDB space more and more”, highlighted Maria do Socorro.

PSDB and PL must, together, compose the governing base. The two parties will be joined by the Republicans, to which Governor Tarcísio de Freitas is affiliated. The Republicans will have eight seats in Alesp. The governing base should also support União Brasil, which has eight seats; PSD, MDB and Podemos, each with deputies; Progressistas, which elected three; Citizenship and the Christian Social Party, with two. It is possible that the New Party, which elected a representative, will also join the ranks.

The opposition will be formed by the PT, which elected 18 deputies and has the second largest bench in the House. The PT had the most voted state deputy in 2022 in São Paulo, Eduardo Suplicy, with 807,015 votes. The opposition bloc will also have PSOL, with five representatives, and PCdoB, which elected deputy Leci Brandão.

Alesp will also have representatives from the Sustainability Network, which re-elected Marina Helou; PDT and Solidarity, with one deputy each; and PSB, which elected three.

“The parties that apparently will achieve greater control are precisely the grassroots parties, such as the PL, which managed to considerably increase the number of deputies, the Republicans, the PSD, the União Brasil and the MDB. We are going to have an Alesp, from the ideological point of view, from the center to the right. In the opposition, the expectation is that the PT, which will have 19 deputies, along with smaller parties such as PSOL, PCdoB and others on the left, will be able to form an opposition, which will be consistent. I would not say that these parties will be able to increase their ability to fight, but they will have the capacity, depending on the matters, to make a good opposition. But the balance of power tends, yes, for Governor Tarcísio de Freitas to have a considerable majority”, said Maria do Socorro.

For Bruno Silva, the new composition of Alesp should also allow the PL to participate in important commissions. “We are basically going to find a very strengthened PL trying to compete for very important positions, especially the most significant commissions, not least because Tarcísio’s party does not have such a large bench within Alesp. By joining forces and configuring a block, the government has the possibility of controlling important commissions, such as those of Legislation, Writing, Justice, and, mainly, Budget. I don’t see many difficulties with that”, emphasized the scientist.

customs agenda

For political scientists, the customs guidelines, which had great weight in the past legislation, may even continue to appear in the new legislature, but this will depend on the posture of Governor Tarcísio de Freitas who, although he was elected with the support of the extreme right and the then President Jair Bolsonaro, has sought to move more towards the center-right.

“It is possible that, in this sense, there will also be content guidelines and, certainly, this will have a very strong weight from the conservative sectors. For now, we have observed that the current governor has been trying to disassociate himself from the extreme right. When he forms such a large alliance and has around him a governmental coalition made up of many parties, he distances himself from that extreme right-wing force that in São Paulo helped to elect him”, said Maria do Socorro.

According to the political scientist, what is expected is that, with this, Alesp will focus more on a neoliberal agenda and less on a customs agenda. “We have to wait a bit, but for now there are signs of a union between the center and the right and the traditional right, not the extreme right.”

For Bruno Silva, at Alesp, a logic very similar to that seen at the federal level should prevail. “There are parliamentarians within the PT and PSOL, for example, who have a logic of militancy in environmental issues, women’s rights and the LGBTQIA+ population. If we observe, it is an Assembly that will have figures that will go to the political clash. But, at the same time, these other parliamentarians, representatives of the more conservative field, or more of that right, will also find in Alesp an echo from the state government.”

Silva emphasized that the point to understand and observe exactly how this behavior will take place within the Legislative Assembly will depend a lot on what kind of agenda the state government will put up for discussion, to be voted on. “And then it seems to me that Tarcísio, as much as he has surfed on Bolsonaro’s wave, he is not Bolsonaro.”

In addition to the approval of neoliberal guidelines, it is also expected that projects related to women will gain more weight in the new legislature. This is because the representation of women in the House has grown a little: from 18 seats, they now occupy 25. “Although the number [de mulheres] is fragmented into several parties, this is also an innovative element”, said Maria do Socorro. “It is still a small growth, but considerable and important. This workbench comes in a crescent. Let’s say that women will now be better able to take on projects, sign projects and fight for them and for their approval. It is not easy to approve such projects and it will depend, of course, on the contribution of deputies to these agendas, “she added.

The political scientist also highlights the fact that female representation is closely linked to party caucuses, because they are underrepresented functions in electoral terms. Therefore, it is important that they manage to form large majorities, in order to attract deputies to support projects that deal with women’s rights.

Maria do Socorro celebrated the number of 25 women elected in Alesp. “With this number, we begin to have greater hopes of increasing several bills or, at least, more bills related to women’s rights being voted on,” she said.

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