The conservative hinterland is firmly behind Bolsonaro

In Saltinho, well-kept single-family houses line the streets of the small town with its 8,000 inhabitants in the interior of the state of São Paulo. Next to the village square there is a church and a school. A few shops are lined up along the main street. Sugar cane is mainly cultivated in the fertile surrounding area. Here, where the problems of the big cities, poverty and crime are far away and country hits are preferred to samba, begins the Brazil, where a majority will vote for President Jair Bolsonaro this Sunday. Anyone who asks the people in Saltinho about the election only hears his name.

Angelo Bucioloti even wears a black t-shirt with Bolsonaro’s face on it under his vest. The 67-year-old entrepreneur voted for him four years ago, as did 89.2 percent of the community. Bucioloti also sees hope for political renewal in Bolsonaro. “We here in the country are an enlightened people who get to the bottom of the grievances. We know what damage the left has done to the country,” he says. Bucioloti addressed the corruption under the government of Lula da Silva’s Labor Party, PT, which ruled the country for over 13 years from 2003. The uncovering of a gigantic scandal in 2014 put a number of entrepreneurs and politicians from practically all parties behind bars. Lula da Silva was also convicted of corruption in 2018, a few months before the election. “Lula is a villain,” says Bucioloti, everyone knows that.

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