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SAO PAULO — The mess that is Brazilian politics right now would make for a fantastic television drama series. Its intricate plots, combining power disputes and alliances concluded behind closed doors, would easily match those of Game of Thrones, except that the omnipresent blood would be replaced with dirty money.

Ever since her reelection for a second term in office just one year ago, President Dilma Rousseff has been fighting against the threat of impeachment, but it's never been so close to materializing as it is now. Over the past week, the center-left leader has seen both Brazil's federal budget and election watchdog turn up the heat. The first rejected the government's public accounts for 2014, citing illegal government maneuvers to hide deficits during last year's election campaign. The election watchdog meanwhile launched an investigation into allegations that her reelection campaign received illegal funds.

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Geopolitics

AMLO Power Grab: Mexico's Electoral Reform Would Make Machiavelli Proud

Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador, aka AMLO, says his plans to reform the electoral system are a way to save taxpayer money. A closer look tells a different story.

President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador of Mexico votes

Luis Rubio

OpEd-

MEXICO CITY — For supporters of Mexico's President Andrés Manuel López Obrador (AMLO) the goal is clear: to keep power beyond the 2024 general election, at any price. Finally, the engineers of the much-touted Fourth Transformation, ALMO's 2018 campaign promise to do away with the privileged abuses that have plagued Mexican politics for decades, are showing their colors.

Current electoral laws date back to the 1990s, when unending electoral disputes were a constant of every voting round and impeded effective governance in numerous states and districts. The National Electoral Institute (INE) and its predecessor, the IFE, were created to solve once and for all those endemic disputes.

Their promoters hoped Mexico could expect a more honest future, with the electoral question resolved. The 2006 presidential elections, which included AMLO as a recalcitrant loser, showed this was hoping for too much. That election is also, remotely, at the source of the president's new electoral initiative.

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