The Brazilian Senate gave its approval to a bill that provides priority to direct negotiations between employers and employees over the existing labor regulations. The country's upper house voted 50 for the bill and 26 against. One lawmaker was absent.
Easing labor laws
The bill will relax the old labor laws. It is a sign that the legislators remain committed when it comes to implementing the reform agenda set by the Temer government. This comes at a time when President Michel Temer suffers from rapidly dwindling support. The labor reform will result in the increased flexibility of holidays and overtime. It helped that the bill was advanced in Congress prior to the decision of the chief prosecutor to press the charges against the sitting president of the country. Brazil's choppy political waters are so bad that the vote scheduled to be held in the upper chamber was delayed for a number of hours. This happened due to a tense stand-off in the upper chamber. The Senate President gave orders to cut the power. It was done so that the opposition senators could be removed from the podium.
The senators threw away the bill's two amendments and continued to debate on the third till late into the June 11th night. The bill would be reverted back to the lower house if any part of the text is changed. Other than that, the bill would be made into law after it gets the approval nod from the Brazilian President.
Even though the passing of labor reform bill represents a noted victory for the Temer Government, it will not make much difference to the chances of the president remaining in the office. A lot of speculation exists about Rodrigo Maia, the house speaker, becoming the next president. He has publicly denied of trying to attain the top job. The speaker has, however, signaled his commitment to both the investors and also to the political allies.
Temer, the incumbent president, could be subjected to a vote in the lower house which may authorize his trial regarding a corruption charge at the Supreme Court. In case such a thing occurs, the Brazilian President must stand down while defending his actions.
The opposition is fiercely against labor reforms. The Brazilian Government had hoped to pass this reform bill by 2017's first half. Since the future of President Michel Temer appears to be bleak, the chances of getting approval from the Congress have receded as well.