The favourite to win today’s presidential election in Brazil ended her campaign with a rally alongside her mentor in his industrial home town.
President Lula da Silva’s soaring popularity and his support for Dilma Rousseff could boost her chances of becoming the country’s first elected woman president.
How many votes Marina Silva gets could determine whether the contest goes to a second round.
The Greens leader and ex-Environment Minister under Lula has around 15% of the vote according to the polls. Two new polls suggest Rousseff’s lead has narrowed.
Jose Serra hopes to take part in a run-off, even though the polls suggest he would suffer a landslide defeat. The Social Democratic former governor of Sao Paolo has closed the gap on Rousseff in the polls following corruption allegations in the favourite’s camp.
The electronic ballot boxes are in place. Voters will choose representatives for Congress and state governorships as well as the next president.
They could opt for an array of less conventional candidates. The former footballer Romario, hero of Brazil’s 1994 World Cup success, is one of several playing on voter disillusionment while running for parliament.
But all these are mere sideshows to the main race to replace the most popular leader in Brazilian history.