- Brazil's outgoing president Jair Bolsonaro and the leader of his right-wing Liberal Party (PL) on Tuesday filed a petition with election authorities formally challenging the results of this year's tight presidential run-off vote, which was won by leftist leader Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva.
- PL claims to have found "serious and irremediable inconsistencies" in older models of digital ballot boxes as a software bug made it impossible to individually identify voting machines manufactured before 2020, which account for almost 60% of all those used in the poll. They further claim that ballots submitted via these machines would need to be “invalidated," thus giving the victory to Bolsonaro.
- Bolsonaro, who has long claimed that Brazil's electronic voting system isn't fraud-proof, would reportedly win re-election with 51.05% if the ballots in question were to be annulled.
- The complaint is unlikely to change the final results and reverse Lula's victory, which has been verified by Brazil's Superior Electoral Court and acknowledged by political figures both in Brazil and abroad. However, this move could encourage Bolsonaro's supporters who have been protesting since his defeat — sparking concerns that this could potentially disrupt a peaceful transition of power.
- Supreme Court justice Alexandre de Moraes, who currently leads the Superior Electoral Court, ruled that the plaintiff must present its full audit for both rounds of October's vote within 24 hours or he would dismiss the claim.
- While election security experts consider electronic voting systems less secure than hand-marked paper ballots — as they leave no auditable paper trail — domestic and international experts have never found evidence of fraud in Brazil's system.
- Left narrative, as provided by Common Dreams. Bolsonaro is replicating former US Pres. Trump's undemocratic — and unsuccessful — efforts to overturn the 2020 US election, making good on his threats of not accepting a defeat. Bolsonaro and his party are litigating in bad faith and desperately trying to undermine Brazilian institutions.
- Right narrative, as provided by Fox News. This challenge reflects widespread doubts in Brazil as the corrupt Lula is set to return to office after beating Bolsonaro by a narrow margin. Brazilian institutions are to blame for this distrust as they have screened questions about both the electoral process and results. It's as if they were trying to hide something, while failing to make the country's electoral system auditable.