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Brazil: Pre-campaign rhetoric fires up PT

Nov. 16, 2004 at 2:29 PM

BRASILIA, Brazil, Nov. 16 (UPI) -- Leaders in Brazil's ruling Workers' Party accused former Brazilian President Fernando Henrique Cardoso of indulging in a little pre-campaign rhetoric.

Even though the race is still two years away, party President Jose Genoino is trying to prevent Cardoso from getting an early leg up on the campaign trail while taking shots at current Brazilian leader Luiz Inacio Lula da Sivla.

Cardoso said Monday from London, where he was attending a U.N. seminar, he was disappointed with the progress of the Lula administration on Brazil's social front, an area the left-wing president promised to improve during the 2002 election.

"I've been out of the country for 40 days and I don't know if there have been any miracles, but if not, the (administration's) social plan has disappointed me," Cardoso said.

Genoino rose to the president's and party's defense Tuesday noting the work of Lula's hunger eradication program Zero Fome (Zero Hunger), which has provided food for 1 million Brazilians this year, had gotten off to a slow start.

He also cited work of national programs like literacy and assistance for the elderly as proof of Lula's commitment to social projects.

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