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Latin American figureheads urge Ciro Gomes to drop out of election

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Important left-wing Latin American activists and intellectuals published an open letter asking Brazilian presidential hopeful Ciro Gomes, from the center-left Democratic Labor Party, to drop out of the presidential race and support frontrunner Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva.

Polls suggest Lula is en route to a first-round landslide, a push that would — at least in theory — be made easier should Mr. Gomes leave the race in favor of Lula.

The document is co-signed by dozens of politicians, writers, poets, and journalists. The list includes Argentinian 1980 Nobel Peace Prize laureate Adolfo Pérez Esquivel, Colombian Senator Piedad Córdoba, and former Argentinian Vice President Amado Bou.

Saying the dispute between President Jair Bolsonaro and Lula “will be between fascism and democracy,” the letter calls Ciro Gomes to respect his own political history and avoid “entering an undignified door” in Brazil’s history.

“You know very well that your candidacy has absolutely no chance of winning,” the letter says. Mr. Gomes has consistently polled in the single digits, and sectors from within his own party have jumped on the Lula bandwagon.

Still, Mr. Gomes vehemently resists the idea of ​​supporting Lula — even in a potential runoff between the former president and Jair Bolsonaro. Yesterday, he suggested Lula and the incumbent are cut from the same cloth, denouncing what he calls “left-wing fascism.”

During a panel discussion with newspaper O Estado de S.Paulo, Mr. Gomes said there is an “Office of Hate financed by Lula with lots of stolen money.”

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