Presidential candidate Jair Bolsonaro, “the Brazilian Trump”, stabbed during campaign event in the city of Juiz de Fora; after surgery, congressman in stable condition
By Marques Travae
Controversial congressman and presidential candidate for the PSL party Jair Bolsonaro was stabbed yesterday during a campaign event in the downtown region of the city of Juiz de Fora located in the state of Minas Gerais. The congressman was stabbed in the abdomen and while initial reports claimed the wound wasn’t serious, more recent reports say the congressman lost a substantial amount of blood and was taken to a nearby hospital for treatment.
A man was arrested in for the crime that happened as Bolsonaro was being carried by supporters being the streets of Halfeld and Batista de Oliveira. According to Bolsonaro’s son, the stab wound reached the congressman’s liver, lung and intestinal loop and lowered the congressman’s blood pressure substantially. Bolsonaro was taken to the Santa Casa de Misericórdia in Juiz de Fora, which is located about 125 miles north of Rio de Janeiro. Although listed in serious condition, the congressman’s life is not in danger. The attack happened almost exactly a month ahead of the October 7th elections in Brazil.
The man, identified as Adélio Bispo de Oliveira, attacked Bolsonaro as he was among a crowd of supporters when he assaulted the politician and attempted to flee before being apprehended by the crowd that took the liberty of punching and beating the assailant.
Bolsonaro went through a surgical procedure that ended at about 7:40pm local time and was taken to the hospital ICU unit where his condition was listed as stable. The surgery went well, but the latest reports estimate that the politician will spend anywhere from a week to ten days in the hospital.
In a video that quickly went viral, Bolsonaro was shown waving to his crowd of supporters when he suddenly screamed out, grabbed his abdominal region and fell backwards. Although the media reports that Bolsonaro was wearing a bulletproof vest, the wound struck him just below protective device.
As I have reported for several months, Bolsonaro is a very polarizing figure in Brazilian politics. Although he leads in polls of intended votes in a scenario in which imprisoned former president Lula da Silva cannot run, the congressman also has a very high negative rating that shows he would lose to a number of his competitors in a runoff election. Labeled “the Brazilian Trump”, the far-right candidate is known for making various derogatory comments about women, blacks and homosexuals.
Also intriguing about this attack is Bolsonaro’s stance on loosening gun control laws, a position that another candidate, Marina Silva, the election’s only female candidate, took him to task on a few weeks back in a televised head to head debate. For some, the PSL candidate is just what a Brazil in crisis needs while others see him as a fascist and absolutely detest him. An example of this is the friend’s house I was in a few hours after the attack. One of the women in the house had received the same videos of the attack through social media on her phone and at that moment, the same footage was being shown on BAND TV’s news network. At that very moment, the woman yelled out, “Die, Bolsonaro, die!”
For the record, I don’t support many of Bolsonaro’s positions politically, but I don’t support violent attacks. Six months later, Brazilians are still reeling from the murder of Rio city councilwoman Marielle Franco. If Brazilians truly don’t like Bolsonaro, just take him out at the polls. Period.