Politics Rundown: Thousands storm Brazil’s capital buildings

Biden travels to Mexico for a summit and Republicans elect Kevin McCarthy Speaker of the House.


Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

Protestors, many clad in the yellow soccer jerseys of Brazil’s national team, descend on the nation’s capital.

Hannah Larson, Editor-in-Chief

Thousands of protestors stormed government buildings in Brasilia, Brazil’s capital city, on Sunday, Jan. 8, one week after Brazil’s Supreme Court ordered federal authorities to dismantle a tent camp in Brasilia filled with supporters of former Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro. The pro-Bolsonaro protestors refuse to recognize President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, who defeated Bolsonaro in Brazil’s presidential election and was inaugurated on Jan. 1. Rioters falsely claimed Lula stole the election and called for him to step down.

A fleet of buses conveyed protestors to the federal buildings, where they descended on the Supreme Court, Congress and Presidential Palace. The rioters used fire hydrants to drench the palace floor, hurled rocks through windows and destroyed millions of dollars worth of artwork displayed in the three federal buildings. Brazilian police arrested 300 people and detained at least 1,500 protestors in the capital for questioning.

Lula promised to punish the pro-Bolsonaro protestors for their attack on Brazil’s democracy. Bolsonaro himself was not in Brazil at the time of the attack, having gone to Florida in late December — just two days before Lula’s inauguration. 


President Joe Biden traveled to Mexico City on Sunday, Jan. 8 to discuss economic cooperation and immigration policies with Mexican President Andres Manual Lopez Obrador and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau at a meeting traditionally known as the “Three Amigos Summit.” Biden was expected to discuss illegal fentanyl trafficking with Lopez Obrador, then hear from Trudeau about supply-chain cooperation upon the Canadian leader’s arrival Monday, Jan. 9.


Republicans elected Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) as House Speaker following several days of negotiations, concessions and 14 failed votes. McCarthy and his supporters made a variety of promises to secure his position as speaker, one of which was a commitment that “the House will hold vote on key conservative bills, including a balanced budget amendment, congressional term limits and border security,” according to CNN

McCarthy’s opponent, House Minority Speaker Hakeem Jeffries (D-N.Y.), lost to McCarthy with a vote of 212-216. All House Democrats solidified around Jeffries, while the majority of Republican representatives voted for McCarthy following days of party infighting. 

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