In a message to Congress, the president promises to review the spending ceiling and enhance the minimum wage
BRASÍLIA – President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva has once again criticized the management of his predecessor, Jair Bolsonaro, and in a message to the National Congress he supported the defense of democracy, condemning the state attacks on January 8. In the text delivered to Parliament by civil housing minister, Rui Costa, the PT promises to review the spending ceiling and conduct a new economic policy, with proposals to increase the minimum wage.
The opening ceremony of the activity of the Legislative Power was held in the Chamber of Deputies and brought together deputies and senators. The session was chaired by the Presidents of the Senate and Chamber, Rodrigo Pacheco (PSD-MG) and Arthur Lira (PP-AL), the President of the Federal Supreme Court (STF), Rosa Weber, the Attorney General of the Republic, Augusto Aras and the first secretary of the Chamber, Luciano Bivar (União-PE), in charge of reading the message from the chief executive.
Lula said that Congress has given two “full demonstrations” of its commitment to the Brazilian people: the first was the approval of the proposed amendment to the transitional Constitution (PEC), which set the conditions for Bolsa Família to an amount of R $ 600, and the “quick, firm and decisive” reaction to the “terrorist” acts of January 8.
“They quickly approved the necessary acts to ensure security and institutional order. And they have launched a clear message: together, the three Powers of the Republic will never allow any authoritarian adventure to take place in our country. that democracy and the Constitution”, wrote the president, who also reaffirmed his commitment to respond “to terror and violence with the law and its consequences”.
“The year 2023 will be the beginning of a time of union and reconstruction, a time of reaffirmation of democracy and recommitment to caring for the Brazilian people,” wrote the president, who says he will work to articulate with the governors and mayors, “without any partisan distinction”, and who will listen to workers, entrepreneurs and representatives of society.
Traditionally, the first secretary of the House reads the document. The president reads when he attends the session, which is unusual – the only two exceptions were in 1990, with José Sarney, and in 2003, with Lula himself.
The president recovered one of the phrases from the campaign and said that it is necessary to put the poor back in the budget, otherwise true democracy will never be won. For this, he says, it is necessary to “rebuild the country”. Lula attacked the culture, human rights and environmental policies of his predecessor, Jair Bolsonaro. “Human rights policies and the confrontation of inequalities have been deliberately abandoned,” Lula wrote.
In the message, the president says the spending cap has had “destructive effects on social policies”, has become “harmless” for a tax control tool, says he will build a new tax regime and advance tax reform. The text of the document says that it is necessary to lift the ceiling.
Lula also said the government would propose new labor legislation “with broad social protection” and union restructuring initiatives.
The president re-proposes multilateralism as a point that should structure Brazilian foreign policy, reintegrating Brazil into the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC), where the country has signed a decree against the embargo on Cuba, and strengthening South American integration bodies member of the Common Market of the South (Mercosur) and of the Union of South American Nations (Unasur), inactive since 2019.
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