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Brazil’s president increases re-election chances

September 27, 2014

SAO PAULO (AP) — Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff has improved her chances of winning re-election one week before the country’s 143 million voters cast their ballots, according to a new poll published Saturday.

The poll by the Datafolha suggests Rousseff, of the ruling Workers Party, could beat Socialist Party challenger Marina Silva if the two face off in a second-round vote next month.

Datafolha said 47 percent of potential voters would cast their ballots for the incumbent, while 43 percent would vote for Silva.

In Datafolha’s previous poll, 44 percent favored Rousseff while 46 percent supported Silva.

Datafolha surveyed 11,474 people across Brazil from Sept. 25-26. The poll has a margin of error of 2 percentage points.

Silva had been the running mate of the Socialist Party’s initial candidate, Eduardo Campos, who was killed in a plane crash last month. After she was chosen to replace him, she quickly rose in voter intention polls.

One month ago, a Datafolha survey showed Rousseff trailing Silva by 10 percentage points.

Since then, Rousseff has won support by attacking Silva’s ability to govern and implying she would end the social programs created by the Workers Party that have helped lift tens of millions of poor people into the lower middle class over the past decade.

The Datafolha survey published Saturday also showed that in the first round of voting set for Oct. 5, Rousseff leads Silva 40 percent to 27 percent. If neither candidate wins a majority, a runoff will be held Oct. 26.

Earlier this week, a poll released by the Ibope Institute showed Rousseff with a 9 percentage point lead over Silva in the first round and the two candidates tied at 41 percent for the second round.

Ibope surveyed 3,010 people across Brazil from Sept. 20-22 and the poll had a margin of error of plus or minus 2 percentage points.

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