The V-Dem index (Varieties of Democracy, in Portuguese), produced by the institute of the same name, based at the University of Gothenburg, in Sweden, did not classify Brazil as an “electoral-only democracy” because of the supposed existence of censorship and political prisoners in the country, as republished on social media. In fact, as verified by Projeto Comprova, according to the 2023 V-Dem Institute report, which analyzed global democratic indices between 2012 and 2022, Brazil’s 58th place in the ranking of democracies, out of a total of 179 countries, is the result political polarization and what they call “autocratization” mobilization.
According to the institution, autocratization occurs when a government or country moves away from democratic principles, moving closer to autocracies. The most recent V-Dem report, from March this year, points out that Brazil has fallen in the Liberal Democracy Index (LDI) since 2015, accentuated following the impeachment of former president Dilma Rousseff (PT), in 2016. It also shows that the decline reached its maximum level in 2019, after the election of Jair Bolsonaro (PL).
The report highlights, however, that, although the election of Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva (PT) was followed by post-election violence — citing the invasion in Brasília on January 8 —, the LDI had a slight increase in 2023. “The President Lula will continue to face challenges to unify the country, but he has a history of respecting democratic institutions during his previous tenure in office”, points out the report.
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The investigation of this content was carried out by Nexo and A Gazeta and published on September 12 by Projeto Comprova, a coalition that brings together 41 vehicles to check viral content. It was verified by Folha, O Povo, Estadão and Grupo Sinos.