Brazil’s former vice president, Michel Temer, assumed power as interim president Thursday with an all-white, all-male Cabinet after the country’s Senate voted to suspend President Dilma Rousseff. She is accused of breaking fiscal and budget laws.

Temer, a member of the center-right, opposition PMDB party, has himself been implicated in Brazil’s massive corruption scandal involving state-owned oil company Petrobras. His swearing in marks the first time since 1979 that no women have been in the Cabinet.

In the video above, “Democracy Now!” hears from Andrew Fishman, a researcher and reporter for The Intercept working in Rio de Janeiro. Fishman discusses the role of the United States in protests against Rousseff and the background of Temer’s new Cabinet members.

On May 11, The Intercept’s Glenn Greenwald wrote of the seizure of power:

[Rousseff’s] successor will be Vice President Michel Temer of the PMDB party (pictured, above). So unlike impeachment in most other countries with a presidential system, impeachment here will empower a person from a different party than that of the elected President. In this particular case, the person to be installed is awash in corruption: accused by informants of involvement in an illegal ethanol-purchasing scheme, he was just found guilty of, and fined for, election spending violations and faces an 8-year-ban on running for any office. He’s deeply unpopular: only 2% would support him for President and almost 60% want him impeached (the same number that favors Dilma’s impeachment). But he will faithfully serve the interests of Brazil’s richest: he’s planning to appoint Goldman, Sachs and IMF officials to run the economy and otherwise install a totally unrepresentative, neoliberal team (composed in part of the same party – PSDB – that has lost 4 straight elections to the PT).

None of this is a defense of PT. That party – as even Lula acknowledged to me in my interview of him – is filled with serious corruption. Dilma, in many critical ways, has been a failed president, and is deeply unpopular. They have often aligned with and served the country’s elite at the expense of their base of poor supporters. The country is suffering economically and in almost every other way.

—Posted by Alexander Reed Kelly.

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