Pension reform won critical support Wednesday on two fronts, with most governors endorsing it and a majority of voters expressing approval, at least in principle. Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro met with governors or vice governors of 25 of the country’s 27 states. All 25 announced support for the main lines of Bolsonaro’s pension reform bill, now before Congress. Some expressed the need for modifications but without undermining the main thrust of the reform, which is to drastically reduce deficits. Meanwhile, a nationwide poll of voting age Brazilians, conducted by the Public Opinion Research Institute (IBOPE) for the National Confederation of Industry (CNI), showed 59% supporting pension reform, in principle, with only 36% opposing any reform. Separately, governors also pressured the Bolsonaro administration on various tax, spending and debt-relief measures seen as essential to addressing state-level fiscal problems. Bolsonaro said the administration will address the issues raised by the governors but added that pension reform should be seen as a first step toward fiscal relief.
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