Folha's reporting on a series of phony candidacies from Bolsonaro's political party PSL evolved into a crisis inside the Bolsonaro administration, triggered by an attack on social media from councilman Carlos Bolsonaro, one of the president's children, to minister Gustavo Bebianno, on Wednesday (13th).
President Bolsonaro acted as if he were endorsing his son's messages, by sharing them on social media. Sources told Folha's reporters that the president expected Bebianno to hand in his resignation, so he could leave the hospital where he was recovering from surgery and arrive at Brasília with a trump card to contain further developments.
The minister said he doesn't plan to resign and the decision is up to the president.
Other top politicians from PSL also expressed their opinions and increased tensions within the party, already under pressure from the suspected embezzlement of campaign funds destined to fund female candidates in the last general election.
Carlos Bolsonaro posted on social media that Bebianno lied when he claimed to have talked with his father, the president, three times the previous day -- Bebianno used the claim as a way to dismiss any issues between the two.
"I spent the last 24h besides my father, and I say that Gustavo Bebbiano [sic] is lying when he says he talked with my father three times to discuss the matter (...)" he wrote.
Later, Carlos posted an audio recording in which the president refuses to talk to Bebianno: "Gustavo, it's still hard for me to talk, so I am not talking to anyone besides the strictly necessary."
The central figures in the political crisis are Bebianno, who presided over PSL in 2018 and during the campaign, and Houe Representative Luciano Bivar (PE), the current head of the party.
Translated by NATASHA MADOV