Pro-Legalization Mayor Defeated in Rio de Janeiro

Pro Legalization Mayor Defeated In Rio De Janeiro

Rio de Janeiro’s pro-legalization mayoral candidateMarcelo Freixowas defeated in the Oct. 30 run-off by hisconservative opponentMarcelo Crivella—a bishop in the evangelicalUniversal Church of the Kingdom of God. Crivella, who won by a safe 20 percent, is also the nephew of the founder of whatReuterscalls the “evangelical megachurch.” He had to back down from his past criticisms of homosexuality in gay-friendly Rio—as well as his criticisms of Catholicism, Brazil’s dominant religion. With the country still reeling over the August impeachment of presidentDilma Rousseffof the left wing Workers Party (PT), the race in Rio represents a further gain for Brazil’s political right.Freixo, a former school-teacher and longtime human rights advocate in Rio de Janeiro’s state legislature, is with the Socialism and Freedom Party (POSL), which broke from the PT over a decade ago and tilts in a more social-libertarian direction. His outspoken stancefor a debate on drug legalizationas a solution to...

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