Brazil's Temer: 'I won't resign' amid corruption allegations

Brazilian stocks plunged as Pres. Michel Temer is widely viewed as pro-business and a supporter of economic reforms

Brazil's government plunged into crisis on Thursday, after a newspaper report alleged that President Michel Temer had condoned a bribe to a politician to keep him from testifying on corruption.

Temer was reported late yesterday by O Globo to have been secretly recorded agreeing to payments of hush money to Eduardo Cunha, the disgraced former speaker of the lower house of Congress.

Opposition politicians and protesters have called for the removal of Brazil's President Michel Temer following reports that he recorded discussing payments to silence testimony by a potential witness in the country's biggest-ever corruption probe.

Despite Temer's refusal to resign, Sergio Praça, a political scientist at Brazil's Getulio Vargas Foundation university, said the leader would have "zero chance of surviving this, once the audio tapes were released".

Mr Temer is trying to get pension reforms through Congress that would mean men would have a minimum retirement age of 65, and women 62, and most people would contribute more. The Ibovespa stocks index closed 8.8% lower, after dropping 10.5% shortly after the open and tripping a circuit breaker that temporarily halted trading.

The New Zealand dollar fell, and is heading for a 0.4 percent weekly decline, as a scandal surrounding Brazil's President Michel Temer took the spotlight off US President Donald Trump and US data printed strong enough to keep intact bets on a US rate hike next month.

The ongoing scandal deepened at dawn on Thursday as police searched the Rio de Janeiro home and Brasilia office of Senator Aecio Neves, who almost won the presidency in 2014 and planned to run again next year.

Since its start three years ago, the "Car Wash" investigation into the kickback scheme at Petrobras has revealed a scale of corruption that shocked even the most cynical Brazilians and already has put several top businessmen and politicians in jail.

In his speech, Mr Temer categorically denied the allegation and insisted he will stay in his job.

A recording of the alleged conversation was presented to prosecutors by the chairman of JBS, the world's biggest meatpacker, as part of plea bargain negotiations, the O Globo newspaper reported on Wednesday.

More news: North Korea condemns U.N. Sanctions

Even in this country tired from the constant drip of revelations of a wide-ranging corruption investigation, the incendiary accusation set off a firestorm and Brazil's highest court opened an investigation. The paper says it's found out that there's a secret recording in which Temer is heard endorsing bribes to buy the silence of a former political ally.

Cunha, formally of Temer's Brazilian Democratic Party (PMDB), led the impeachment charge against ex-president Dilma Rousseff that culminated in Temer taking power.

Temer's administration has been embroiled in corruption scandals since being installed in power past year, but the Batista tape is perhaps the strongest blow to the stability of the unelected government yet, plunging the already highly unpopular executive deeper into crisis.

Protests were planned for later Thursday.

JBS representatives did not respond to an email sent by The Associated Press late Wednesday seeking comment.

At the same time, a massive corruption scandal involving the state oil company Petrobras was unfolding. Senior politicians can be investigated and tried only by Brazil's highest court.

Brazil's Bovespa stock index lost 9%, its steepest fall since the 2008 financial crisis, on concerns the probe could derail President Temer's fiscal reforms.

The Eurasia risk consultancy said the new allegation threatens Temer.

If the allegations are proven true, "President Temer is unlikely to finish his term", Eurasia wrote, adding that at the very least the matter will delay major reforms Temer is proposing.

Related News:

  • Cavaliers go one up

    Cavaliers go one up

    Despite winning last season, Lue probably can't wait to figure out what to do with Love against this Golden State team. Kevin Love added a playoff career-high 32 points with 12 rebounds while Tristan Thompson chipped in with 20 points.

    Rohit, Shami included in India's Champions Trophy squad

    Shami's absence from the ODI scene stretches back even further, the seamer last featuring at the World Cup in March 2015. MSK Prasad said that they will be grooming Rishabh Pant just like Hardik Pandya and Jasprit Bumrah have been groomed.
    Roger Ailes, Former Fox News CEO, Dead At 77

    Roger Ailes, Former Fox News CEO, Dead At 77

    Some will mourn, some will cheer, but there is no doubt that Roger Ailes left his imprint on the Media establishment in America. Ailes was the former Fox chairman and CEO of the network until he stepped down amid a sexual harassment scandal last summer.
  • Watch New York Yankees Retire Derek Jeter's Number

    Watch New York Yankees Retire Derek Jeter's Number

    The 42-year-old was feted in an emotional ceremony before a star-studded group, including family, former teammates and other Major League Baseball legends.
    Chaffetz will resign, raising doubts about Trump probe

    Chaffetz will resign, raising doubts about Trump probe

    None of the Republicans running for office should expect an endorsement from Chaffetz until a nominee has been selected, he said. On Wednesday, he scheduled a hearing for next week in anticipation that Comey might testify.
    Muslim women can opt out of triple talaq, AIMPLB tells SC

    Muslim women can opt out of triple talaq, AIMPLB tells SC

    Giri also argued that unless there are statutory inroads into personal laws, the courts can not test or strike them down. Kapil Sibal, senior counsel representing AIMPLB, informed the five-judge bench headed by Chief Justice of India J.S.
  • John McCain: Throw Turkish ambassador out of US

    John McCain: Throw Turkish ambassador out of US

    The diplomatic incident has sparked outrage in Washington and even prompted the State Department to summon the Turkish ambassador. We do not do this here. "There is no excuse for this kind of thuggish behavior", McCain initially tweeted after the incident.

    Cannes 2017: Deepika Padukone styles up with smoky eyes, thigh-high slit

    Instead, on this year's red carpet, the Chinese actress is introducing her alter ego, the Cannes judge who wears subdued colours. Emily Ratajkowski wore a sexy, sleek number, while Lily Rose Depp looked like a grecian goddess in her gold leaf detail dress.
    2016 list: Most popular baby names in Maine

    2016 list: Most popular baby names in Maine

    Music fans will recognize Kehlani from artist Kehlani Parrish, and Star Wars fans will remember Kylo from "The Force Awakens". In fact, Emma and Noah have stolen the top spots in the US for three years in a row, according to the administration's lists.
  • Europeans snub trade text at China's Silk Road summit

    Europeans snub trade text at China's Silk Road summit

    They said the initiative was not clear on public procurement or social and environmental standards. Baglay also mentioned that India is awaiting positive response from China.
    Say Hello To The New VW Up GTI

    Say Hello To The New VW Up GTI

    Acceleration from standstill to "hundreds" takes 8.8 seconds, top speed of almost 200 kilometers per hour. The GTI upgrade is predictably subtle but does enough to make this Up look "proper", we reckon.
    Trump denies any collusion between his campaign and Russian Federation

    Trump denies any collusion between his campaign and Russian Federation

    And Graham said that could impede Congress's "ability to conduct investigations of all things Russian Federation ". That would make it harder to subpoena records of people who could be subjects of the investigation, he added.


Most liked

McCain: Turkey Ambassador Should Leave US
Video appeared to show Erdogan's bodyguards hitting and kicking protesters and pulling out guns as D.C. police tried to intervene. They "began aggressively provoking Turkish-American citizens who had peacefully assembled to greet the President".

Trump's Saudi Visit Holds Important Dimensions, Strategic Issues
Navy's 5th Fleet, which frequently has tense encounters with Iran's navy in the Persian Gulf. The largest U.S. military base in the Middle East is in Qatar, and Bahrain hosts the U.S.

Ross Barkley: Everton boss Ronald Koeman not confident midfielder will stay
Everton have been dealt a huge blow in their attempts to sign Swansea City attacking midfielder Gylfi Sigurdsson this summer after the Iceland worldwide said he isn't "trying to leave" the Welsh side .

No data lost in cyber attack on Basingstoke and North Hampshire Hospital
The company said the virus has been localized and "technical work is underway to destroy it and update the antivirus protection". The NHS says it employs more than 1.5 million people, making it one of the world's biggest employers alongside the U.S.

'Mom' To Make Planned Parenthood Donation In Place Of Emmys Campaign
For example, in an article about the Mom donation, Hollywood Reporter writer Lesley Goldberg wrote : "The news comes as the U.S. Senate is mulling legislation that would block low-income patients from going to Planned Parenthood for preventative care".

Experts question North Korea role in WannaCry cyberattack

General Sports Todd Pletcher takes sure and steady approach to Preakness
First, it has been well documented that Classic Empire was obliterated in the cavalry charge out of the gate at Churchill Downs. I find that any Kentucky Derby run on a wet track, there's kind of a "yeah, but." narrative that follows.

Palestinian killed by W Bank Jewish settlers
A video of another settler handing out chocolates to "celebrate" the death of a young Palestinian man only served to exacerbate anger.

ICC Champions Trophy 2017: Rohit Sharma, Mohammed Shami recalled to India's squad
Mumbai: India on Monday announced the 15-member squad for the Champions Trophy to be played in England between June 1-18. Mahendra Singh Dhoni : India lifted the Champions Trophy last time under Dhoni.

New Video Shows Erdogan Watching Washington Brawl
US lawmakers demanded stronger action. "We should throw their ambassador the hell out of the United States of America ", Sen. The confrontation came after President Donald Trump welcomed Erdogan to the White House on 16 May.

'Aquaman' Photos Leaked Of Mera
Amber took to Instagram that day to post a photo of herself getting her makeup done while reading the original Aquaman comic. Heard and " Aquaman " director James Wan shared photos of Heard in character as Aquaman's love interest, Mera, on Thursday.

Trump slams Comey, once more dismisses Russian Federation probe as "witch hunt"
That appointment and Democratic pleas for more gave Republicans a fresh political talking point Thursday. Mueller, I would jealously guard the witness pool". "The scope of the investigation is still the same".

Confederate Monument No. 3 Down, but 4th Won't Be So Easy
The bill allows local governments to take down a memorial only if voters approve the action at "an election held for that goal ". Dylann Roof, an avowed racist, shot and killed nine black parishioners at the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church.

Republicans starting to turn as committee asks to see Comey documents
But O'Sullivan said it was not realistic to expect the Trump administration's justice department to charge the sitting President.

USA to continue with Obama-era Iran nuclear deal, for now
Tillerson at that time said the Trump administration would nonetheless review the terms of the deal because of Iran's violation of U.N.