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Rousseff set to face runoff with Neves

October 6, 2014

Official results in Brazil show incumbent Dilma Rousseff will face a run-off vote against challenger Aecio Neves in the country's presidential election. Rousseff was the favorite heading into the vote.

Brasilien, dilma Rousseff, Aecio Neves, Wahlen, stichwahl, präsidentin
Image: picture-alliance/dpa

Brazil's election authority on Sunday said no candidate had reached the required more-than-50 percent threshold in the election, meaning an October 26 runoff will be required.

With 99 percent of votes counted, the leftist Rousseff was leading with 41.5 percent. Social Democrat Neves trailed with 33.6 percent of the vote and prominent conservationist Marina Silva took just 21 percent, according to results released by the Supreme Electoral Tribunal (TSE).

The current president was the clear favorite going into Sunday's election, but agreed with pollsters that a runoff would be the likely outcome.

"I expect two rounds of voting," Rousseff told reporters after casting her ballot in her former home of Porto Alegre.

Neves surges ahead

Neves, whose pro-business Social Democrats are often credited for laying the groundwork for Brazil's economic boom under Rousseff's Workers' Party, called on Silva's rival Socialists to ally with his party ahead of the runoff.

"I am honored to represent the hope for change," he told his supporters after the results came in. "It's time to unite our forces," he added, calling for "a government that unites decency and efficiency."

Silva did not endorse either Rousseff or Neves, saying her party would hold meetings in the coming days to discuss the matter.

A former environment minister and defector from the ruling party of the past 12 years, Silva had been polling ahead of Neves for weeks until a day before the vote. Her popularity had risen markedly in the weeks after she took over the Socialist Party campaign from Eduardo Campos, the original candidate who died in a plane crash in August. She was formerly Campos' running mate.

Voters also chose governors, members of congress and state legislators in Sunday's poll.

dr/av (AFP, AP, dpa, Reuters)