On Tuesday (23/08), Superior Electoral Court (TSE) President Alexandre de Moraes met with Defense Minister, Paulo Sérgio Nogueira. No official information about what was discussed during the meeting was released. However, media sources had already announced that the occasion would be used to debate some requests made by the Defense Ministry regarding the elections, such as a technical examination of the new electronic voting machines.

The Armed Forces and the Elections

The Armed Forces is part of the Elections Transparency Commission, whose function is to increase dialogue with various public institutions and social segments to improve the electoral process. However, lately, it has questioned several aspects of the electoral system, complained of not being “prestigious” by the TSE and demanded “technical discussion” about a list of suggestions sent by themselves to the electoral court.

According to the opposition, this behavior indicate that the Armed Forces would be following a strategy established by the Government to shed suspicions over the elections based on unfounded criticisms against the electronic voting machines’ reliability, which would be prone to frauds. In practice, the Defense Ministry would be embracing the criticisms made by President Jair Bolsonaro on the security of electronic voting machines and the transparency of the electoral system.

A Chance for Peace?

When the meeting was announced, according to political commentators, it appeared as exclusive opportunity for a truce between the Government and the Electoral Justice. This would be the case because Alexandre de Moraes took charge of the TSE, recently, on Tuesday (16/08) and his predecessor, Minister Edson Fachin, was much more resistant to any dialogue with the Armed Forces. Nogueira even asked for an audience with Fachin, but he ended up not scheduling the meeting. According to media sources, this occurred due to President Bolsonaro’s criticism against the electronic voting machines, the TSE and the electoral system.

Positive Results for the Institutional Stability

Defense Minister Paulo Sérgio Nogueira requested a new meeting with the president of the Superior Electoral Court (TSE), Alexandre de Moraes for this week. The meeting from 23 August was considered a protocol, and the Defense requested another with Moraes to debate technical aspects.

According to media outlets, Paulo Sérgio was pleased to have been received alone by the Moraes, especially due to the defense minister’s relationship with the previous TSE President, which was considered bad and limited to official letters.

The objective of the new meeting is to delve into some of one of the Armed Forces’ proposals to improve the electoral system and that have not been implemented so far. Among these proposed measures is the change in the integrity test of electronic voting machines. This test is carried out on election day in the Regional Electoral Courts (TRE), and the Defense Ministry has proposed to carry out this test in the polling stations.

For political commentators, if the Electoral Justice accepts this request, it would be a way of making a positive gesture to the Armed Forces, improving relations.


However, TSE technicians say it is unfeasible to audit a ballot box with biometrics on election day, as Defense Ministry wants. Technicians say that, in practice, this is impossible on several fronts: it would be unfeasible to convince voters to return after having voted to go to the integrity test and wait for the conclusion. In addition, it is also impossible to take the external control company for this type of test throughout the country.

They also say that this would create a climate of distrust in the voter: “Imagine explaining this to an elderly person or a voter who does not understand biometrics? It would generate distrust and difficulty at the same time”, says one of the technicians.

Must Read


Free Articles
Related News