São Paulo state lawmakers voted on Tuesday to impeach Arthur do Val, one of their former peers, for his sexist remarks about Ukrainian women. In early March, a leaked audio message showed Mr do Val raving about Ukrainian women in a derogatory way, saying refugees “are easy because they are poor”.
As his opponents initiated impeachment proceedings against him in the State Congress, for breach of decorum, Mr. do Val resigned from his post in April in a bid to preserve his political rights (impeached politicians in Brazil are banned from elections for eight years) .
Mr. do Val, a former conservative YouTuber who entered electoral politics in 2018, became the first São Paulo state lawmaker to lose his political rights in 23 years. His office called the process “a political witch hunt aimed solely at preventing him from running for Congress in October.”
Indeed, the São Paulo State Congress turned out to have an awkward double standard. Last year, another lawmaker groped a colleague during a session – and was not removed despite having her harassment caught on camera. The legislator in question received a six-month suspension without pay but retained his functions and political rights.