Brazil’s Supreme Electoral Court (TSE) on Tuesday voted to postpone a decision on alleged campaign finance violations in a move that will gain time for President Michel Temer. The court voted to hear additional testimonies in the case and allow more time for defense lawyers to present fresh motions. The decision is likely to postpone any additional action by the court for at least three weeks. Prosecutors allege that the 2014 national ticket formed by Dilma Rousseff for president and Michel Temer for vice president violated campaign finance laws, raising millions in off-the-books donations. Rousseff was impeached and removed from office in 2016 in a case unrelated to the campaign finance allegations. Temer succeeded her as president and is set to serve out the remainder of the four-year term. The court could decide to throw out the allegations or it could find one or both of the candidates guilty of campaign finance law violations. In the event Temer is found guilty, he would be automatically removed from office with new national elections convened. A third path, one which is frequently cited by political risk analysts, is the possibility that the court will simply let the clock run out on the case until Temer’s term ends next year.
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