Brazil's new president Jair Bolsonaro does not mince words. On the eve of his ascension, the right-wing politician and former paratrooper announced over Twitter that he would issue an immediate decree easing gun laws and will work to "fight the Marxist trash" be says is being taught in Brazil's classrooms, according to France24.
The announcements underlined Bolsonaro's desire to break with decades of center-left rule in Brazil, as he prepares to take over from President Michel Temer, a center-right caretaker figure who served the past two years and finished with historic unpopularity.
They also reinforced the similarity between Bolsonaro and US President Donald Trump, who has taken pride in keeping many of his own promises to his base regardless of the bitter national disunity that has resulted.
Bolsonaro, 63, won election in October on an anti-crime, anti-corruption platform.
He triumphed against a candidate from the left-wing Workers Party, which had held the presidency between 2003 and 2016 before graft and financial mismanagement soured its image with voters. A tepid exit from a record-busting recession also spurred appetite for change. -France24
Bolsonaro coasts into office with a 75% approval rating that will undoubtedly make his agenda far easier to carry out.
On Saturday he tweeted that an imminent decree would make it much easier for adults over 25 to obtain firearms, as long as they have no criminal record. Bolsonaro says that allowing "good" people to own guns will discourage criminals, as well as reduce Brazil's homicide rate after nearly 64,000 murders last year.
His opponents say this will usher in vigilante justice, while a Monday poll by the Datafolha institute found that 61% of Brazilians were against the idea.
Bolsonaro tweetd on Monday "One of the goals to take Brazil from the worst positions in the world's education rankings is to combat the Marxist trash that has settled in educational institutions. Together with the Minister of Education and others involved we will evolve into forming citizens and no more political militants." (translated)
Uma das metas para tirarmos o Brasil das piores posições nos rankings de educação do mundo é combater o lixo marxista que se instalou nas instituições de ensino. Junto com o Ministro de Educação e outros envolvidos vamos evoluir em formar cidadãos e não mais militantes políticos.— Jair M. Bolsonaro (@jairbolsonaro) December 31, 2018
The incoming President along with his new foreign minister, Ernesto Araujo, have frequently referred to the Workers Party and other left-wing groups as Marxists.
Between 250,000 and 500,000 people are expected to attend Bolsonaro's Tuesday inauguration, including the Israeli and Hungarian prime ministers Benjamin Netanyahu and Viktor Orbán among a dozen notable dignitaries.
Netanyahu wants Bolsonaro to confirm his election promise to move Brazil’s embassy to Jerusalem and claimed on Monday that the president-elect had told him the move was a matter of “when, not if”. The pledge has divided allies and sparked a diplomatic row – an early sign, analysts said, of how the former army captain’s radical ideology will sit uneasily with the realities of governing. -The Guardian
Security will be tight surrounding the inauguration, with anti-missile defenses and over 20 warplanes deployed to ensure a restricted airspace over the capital.
The ceremony will follow Brazil's New Year's celebrations - which are expected to see over two million people to Rio de Janeiro's Copacabana beach.