Brazil Political System
As many people know, Brazil is a Federal Presidential Republic, where the president is elected every four years by the people. He/she is the head of state and he/she has the power to execute or veto laws and also administrate the country. Brazil is divided into 26 independent states and one federal district, which is Brasília, the capital. Each of the states and the capital are represented by stars in the Brazilian flag.
Brazil Political System is divided in three branches of government: Legislative, Executive and Judiciary. These branches are divided also in the federal, state and city spheres. Let’s understand each one of them.
The Legislative Branch is involved directly with laws. This is the branch that basically has to create new laws and also change old ones if necessary. Both tasks, to be done, need to undergo through voting. It is also in charge of supervising the executive branch and point if there is something wrong with the public administration.
It covers three spheres: Federal, State and City.
- Federal: Congressmen and Senators
- State: State Representatives
- City: Councillors
Did you know that the former football player Romário was a Senator? He was elected in 2010.
The Executive Branch is the biggest country’s administrator. This branch applies the laws approved by the Legislative Branch and it’s also this branch that makes people obey the laws. There is a difference between the executive and the legislative: At the legislative, the number of representatives is way bigger than the executive, which has one representative for each sphere:
- Presidente (president). Represents the Federal Sphere.
- Governador (governor). Represents the State Sphere.
- Prefeito (mayor). Represents the City Sphere.
If the President or any other representative of each sphere is impeached, their deputy takes office.
The Judiciary Branch
The Judiciary Branch is responsible for judging possible law infractions existing in the country. This branch judges each case, comprehending the situation and looking for the best, fair and well balanced judgment. The judiciary branch presents some differences from the others.
This branch is not separated in spheres, but in something that we call subjects, that are different areas in which justice works. They are divided in:
- Common Justice
- Federal Justice
And three specialized ones:
- Electoral Justice
- Labor Justice
- Military Justice
Each one is divided in 3 instances, but the third one is the supreme court of each one of them. All these supreme courts are under supervision of the Supremo Tribunal Federal (Brazilian Supreme Court). It’s important to say that the people in charge of these courts are ministers chosen by the executive branch and approved by the senate.
Elections in Brazil
Voting is a legal obligation in Brazil, which means that every citizen from 18 to 65 years old must vote. The consequence of not voting can be really serious. Besides paying a fine, a Brazilian could be prevented from getting a passport, a bank loan or even enrolling in a public institution of job.
According to the Brazil political system, there are two different periods for elections in Brazil. One period to vote for president, governors, senators, and congressmen and the other one to choose mayors and Councillors. That means that every two years Brazilian need to vote for something. Bear in mind that a political term lasts for 4 years, so if we are voting for a President in 2018, we will vote for a mayor in 2020, and than vote again for a president in 2022. Yes, it’s a lot of voting!
Something also interesting about the elections in Brazil is the fact that all the voting process is electronic. While many countries use the paper ballot to vote, in Brazil, people use a machine to do it. This electronic machine is used for voting since 1996. A practical and faster way to vote and to know the results.
Now it’s your turn!
Complete the sentences below using the words from ten box:
- O presidente do Brasil é eleito pelo ___________.
- O sistema político é dividido em Legislativo, ____________ e Judiciário.
- _____________, _____________ e _____________ fazem parte do poder Executivo.
- O Supremo _____________ federal é responsável pelas cortes supremas.
- O voto é _____________ no Brasil.
- Um mandato político dura _____________ anos.
- No Brasil, o voto é feito _____________.
Hugs from Rio & Learn!
- O presidente do Brasil é eleito pelo povo.
- O sistema político é dividido em Legislativo, Executivo e Judiciário.
- Presidente, Governador e Prefeito fazem parte do poder Executivo.
- O Supremo Tribunal federal é responsável pelas cortes supremas.
- O voto é obrigatório no Brasil.
- Um mandato político dura quatro anos.
- No Brasil, o voto é feito eletronicamente.