SAO PAULO (Reuters) – Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro’s support has fallen in some of Brazil’s biggest cities, surveys said on Sunday, suggesting a previous bump may be short-lived as the country still grapples with a brutal coronavirus outbreak.
Previous polls have seen the far-right former army captain’s support rise, despite what is widely seen as his poor handling of an epidemic that has now killed more than 160,000 Brazilians.
Polls on Sunday suggested that support may be waning.
According to a Datafolha poll, undertaken at the start of November and published in the Folha de S.Paulo newspaper, his support in Sao Paulo fell to 25% from 29%, while in Belo Horizonte it fell to 35% from 40%, compared with a previous poll taken Sept. 21-22. The margin of error was 3 percentage points, it said.
In Recife and Rio de Janeiro, his support was more stable, the polls showed.
Meanwhile, a separated compilation of data by pollster Ibope, collated by the G1 website, showed on Sunday that Bolsonaro’s support has fallen in seven state capitals.
The largest drops in support occurred in the cities of Salvador and Rio Branco, in which Bolsonaro’s popularity fell by 7 percentage points.
While Bolsonaro has been criticized by health experts for minimizing the severity of the coronavirus and opposing lockdowns in order to keep the economy going, his popularity has been bolstered by a 322 billion reais ($58 billion) payments program, analysts say.
(Reporting by Roberto Samora; Editing by Daniel Wallis)