Kenneth Rapoza- Forbes, 03/21/2016
On Dec. 19, 1998, President Bill Clinton was impeached by the House of Representatives in the U.S. for perjury and obstruction of justice. Two months later, the Senate absolved him of wrong doing. Clinton survived impeachment when the Senate could not garner the two-thirds vote required to kick him out of office. He was impeached by the lower house, but remained in power anyway. Might the same happen with Brazil’s embattled president Dilma Rousseff?
Chances are slim, but not out of the question even as 68% of the public are in favor of impeachment and a lower house of congress moving to get her out is pretty much a certainty. It will be shocking if she survives that one.
By comparison, Bill Clinton was much more popular in the public eye during his impeachment process. Between 1998 and 1999, the years Clinton was facing a right wing firing squad inWashington, his job approval rating was over 60%, according to the Gallup polls then. Dilma hasn’t enjoyed that much support since 2013. It’s been in decline since the 2014 investigations into a multi-billion dollar bribery and money laundering scheme centered on Brazil’s star corporate giant,Petrobras . She’s been in a free fall ever since. Hardly a month goes by without street protests calling for her ouster. That was not the case with Clinton. Dilma does not enjoy Clinton’s public support. But she might make it out alive if the Senate leans in her favor. She will be like Bill and the capital city will be a house divided.