DiCaprio, Ruffalo urge Brazilians to register to vote
RIO DE JANEIRO –
Hollywood stars Leonardo DiCaprio and Mark Ruffalo joined other celebrities in a final push to get voters in Brazil to register before the deadline on Wednesday, prompting President Jair Bolsonaro to respond in denial.
In recent days, A-listers in Brazil and abroad have used their prestige and social media platforms to urge young voters, for the first time in Brazil, to register to vote in the election. president in October, is expected to turn incumbent far-right Bolsonaro against. Former President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva of the leftist Workers’ Party.
In Brazil, voting is compulsory for anyone between the ages of 18 and 70, and failure to vote is subject to a small fine. 16- and 17-year-olds can vote, but it’s not required, and young people have been at the center of nationwide voting campaigns.
Brazil’s electoral authority says it has received a record number of registration requests.
DiCaprio, an environmental activist, previously feuded with Bolsonaro over the Brazilian leader’s efforts to expand development in the Amazon rainforest.
As the deadline approached, DiCaprio sent out three posts on his official Twitter account – all written in Portuguese – to encourage signups.
“16 and 17 year olds have the potential to help build the future of Brazil,” he wrote in a link to a website with step-by-step instructions on how to apply. “To exercise this right, you need to register to vote by 23:59 today. ”
Ruffalo has also taken to social media, reposting to his 8 million followers an anthology of short comic videos made by Brazilian teenagers explaining how to sign up.
“Let’s rock this campaign! Democracy and the planet win,” Ruffalo wrote May 1, using the trending hashtag #TiraOTituloHoje, which translates as #RegisterToVoteToday.
At home, legendary Brazilian actress Fernanda Montenegro and singer Anitta also encouraged young people to vote. Then told her nearly 17 million fans on Twitter that she discussed the matter at length with DiCaprio at this week’s Met Gala in New York City, and that the actor knows more about the environment. Bolsonaro.
“I’m so glad you talked to a Hollywood actor, Anitta, it’s every teenager’s dream,” Bolsonaro hit back Tuesday on Twitter. “I talk to thousands of Brazilians every day. They are not famous, but they are the compass for our decisions, because no one defends and understands Brazil better than its own people.”
Bolsonaro also trains DiCaprio, an adversary he has in the past accused, without providing evidence, of funding nonprofit groups he believes are partly responsible for the Amazon fires. .
“DiCaprio must know that it was the president (World Trade Organization) who said that without the Brazilian agribusiness, the world would go hungry,” Bolsonaro told a group of supporters outside the presidential residence. in Brasilia, adding that the actor should “shut up instead of saying nonsense”.
Betina Sarue, project coordinator at Quid, a digital media agency focused on democracy and social issues, said this year’s turnout campaigns were in response to the decline in participation rates in recent elections in Brazil.
Even if voting is mandatory for most of Brazil’s population, the fine is so small – about 70 cents – that more and more people refuse to vote.