On Sunday night, after more than six hours of voting and fiery speeches, the results didn’t fall in President Dilma Rousseff’s favour. Brazilian lawmakers shouted, scuffled and even sang as they debated and voted to impeach Rousseff.
When the final tally was announced, 367 lawmakers had voted to impeach, comfortably more than the two-thirds, 342 needed to pass the motion. Only 137 voted against the proposal, while a handful abstained.
The impeachment motion will next go to the country’s Senate. If a majority approves it there, Rousseff will have to step down for 180 days to defend herself in an impeachment trial.
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Rep. Bruno Araujo was triumphant as he cast the symbolic 342nd vote against Rousseff on Sunday night, passing the two-thirds mark and securing the majority needed to move forward. He said, “It is an honour, what an honour that destiny has reserved for me. From my voice will come the scream of hope for millions of Brazilians”.
If the motion is approved, Rousseff could be suspended as early as May. That would be about three months before the Summer Olympics kick off in Rio de Janeiro, an event that was supposed to showcase Brazil as a rising power on the global stage.