The goal of this report is to present an overview of the public debate about the antidemocratic mobilizations associated with September 7, the Brazilian Independence Day, which were intensified due to the presidential race in October 2022. Based on data collected on Twitter and Facebook, we sought to understand how authoritarian and extremist narratives circulated and targeted democratic institutions and authorities of the Brazilian Judiciary Branch. To compose this framework, we chose two different periods for analysis: the period before September 7, between June 1 and September 1, and the holiday week, between September 2 and 8. On Twitter, we sought to explore the evolution of the general debate about the holiday, the discussion on each topic, institutions and authorities associated with the date, and the most frequent terms in this discussion. On Facebook, the analysis focused on public groups aligned with former president Jair Bolsonaro due to the identification of antidemocratic content and electoral publication boosting circulating on the network in the months prior to the elections.
September 7; Antidemocratic Mobilizations; 2022 Presidential Elections.
Summary of Results
- The debate on Twitter about September 7 began growing in May 2022, and a public call for antidemocratic demonstrations made by former president Jair Bolsonaro prompted a significant increase in this discussion in the beginning of August.
- The narrative used by Bolsonaro’s supporters was that the date could be strategic to express the government’s strength and ‘win the war’ against the Judiciary Branch and the opposition. The Supreme Court (STF) and the Superior Electoral Court (TSE) were the biggest targets.
- The most frequent topics in both pro-government and opposition profiles included the security forces and interventionists, as well as mentions to the STF and the TSE.
- In public groups supporting the former president on Facebook, there was a predominance of posts between July 1 and September 1 with videos in which Bolsonaro called electors for antidemocratic acts in association with Christian values.
- On Twitter, the rivalry between Bolsonaro and the recently elected president of the TSE, Alexandre de Moraes, was emphasized on the week of September 7, with several attacks against the minister and claims of a ‘judicial dictatorship’.