AP

Bolsonaro seeks to rev up his support with motorcycle rally

Apr 15, 2022, 12:37 PM | Updated: 3:26 pm

Supporters of Brazil's President Jair Bolsonaro take part in a caravan of thousands of motorcycle e...

Supporters of Brazil's President Jair Bolsonaro take part in a caravan of thousands of motorcycle enthusiasts who gathered in a show of support for him in Sao Paulo, Brazil, Friday, April 15, 2022. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)

(AP Photo/Andre Penner)

BRASILIA, Brazil (AP) — President Jair Bolsonaro led thousands of motorcyclists on a campaign ride through Brazil’s most populous state Friday, seeking to drum up support ahead of October’s elections as he trails in early opinion polls.

Bolsonaro, wearing a black leather jacket, piloted a Honda cycle during the rally that motored about 130 kilometers (80 miles) from Sao Paulo city to Americana. Officials of Sao Paulo state gave no estimate on the number of participants, many of whom carried Brazilian flags or wore the national colors of green and yellow.

“He is a popular president, who is among the people, and the majority is on his side. We have to have these movements in the streets that show what the truth is,” said Leandro Rosa, a 42-year-old supporter who joined in the rally with his son Leonardo, 16, on the back of his motorcycle.

Bolsonaro is focusing much of his campaign attention in Sao Paulo state. Some of his Cabinet ministers resigned in recent weeks to run for Senate seats representing the state and to seek its governorship and are expected to stump for his re-election.

He got more than two-thirds of the votes in the state in the 2018 election, but a survey released this week by pollster Ipespe put him in a close race in Sao Paulo with his main opponent, leftist former President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva. Da Silva recently tapped Geraldo Alckmin, Sao Paulo’s former governor, as his running mate.

For Brazil as a whole, opinion polls have shown Bolsonaro trailing da Silva, but recently the gap has been narrowing.

Motorcycle rallies by Bolsonaro supporters became popular last year, with events staged in numerous cities across Brazil as a Senate committee began investigating his administration’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic.

The president’s disapproval rating rose during the pandemic as he expressed skepticism about coronavirus vaccines and opposed economic restrictions imposed by local leaders trying to curb the virus’ spread. It has caused more than 662,000 deaths in Brazil, the second most in the world, behind only the United States, according to data from John Hopkins University.

“We have gone through difficult times, two years of pandemic, and today we feel the repercussions of a war on the other side of the world, but we will overcome these obstacles,” Bolsonaro told the motorcyclists.

___

Pollastri reported from the motorcycle rally.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

Tracy Toulou...

Associated Press

How to tackle crime in Indian Country? Empower tribal justice, ex-Justice Department official says

A recently retired director of the Justice Dept. says the federal government hasn't given tribal justice systems equal recognition.

17 hours ago

Speaker of the House Mike Johnson...

Associated Press

House Speaker Mike Johnson says he will push for aid to Israel and Ukraine this week

House Speaker Mike Johnson said Sunday he will try to advance wartime aid for Israel this week, along with funding for Ukraine.

18 hours ago

President Joe Biden speaks at a campaign rally Saturday, March 9, 2024, at Pullman Yards in Atlanta...

Associated Press

US shoots down ‘nearly all’ Iran-launched attack drones as Biden vows support for Israel’s defense

Joe Biden cut short a weekend stay at his beach house to meet with his national security team as Iran launched an attack against Israel.

2 days ago

Protesters in Phoenix shout as they join thousands marching around the Arizona state Capitol after ...

Associated Press

Abortion ruling supercharges Arizona to be an especially important swing state

A ruling this week instituting a near-total abortion ban supercharged Arizona's role, turning it into the most critical battleground.

3 days ago

Former President Donald Trump, center, appears in court for his arraignment, Tuesday, April 4, 2023...

Associated Press

Manhattan court searching for jurors to hear first-ever criminal case against a former president

Jury selection is set to start Monday in former President Donald Trump's hush money case — the first trial of the presumptive nominee.

3 days ago

Follow @ktar923...

Sponsored Content by Condor Airlines

Condor Airlines can get you smoothly from Phoenix to Frankfurt on new A330-900neo airplane

Adventure Awaits! And there's no better way to experience the vacation of your dreams than traveling with Condor Airlines.

Sponsored Articles

...

Midwestern University

Midwestern University Clinics: transforming health care in the valley

Midwestern University, long a fixture of comprehensive health care education in the West Valley, is also a recognized leader in community health care.

...

Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Day & Night is looking for the oldest AC in the Valley

Does your air conditioner make weird noises or a burning smell when it starts? If so, you may be due for an AC unit replacement.

...

Fiesta Bowl Foundation

The 51st annual Vrbo Fiesta Bowl Parade is excitingly upon us

The 51st annual Vrbo Fiesta Bowl Parade presented by Lerner & Rowe is upon us! The attraction honors Arizona and the history of the game.

Bolsonaro seeks to rev up his support with motorcycle rally