Brazil Elects First Woman President

Dilma Rousseff takes 56% in runoff vote

By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff

Posted Nov 1, 2010 6:57 AM CDT

(Newser) – Brazil has elected its first woman president: Dilma Rousseff took the top slot after yesterday’s runoff election. The former energy secretary and chief of staff to president Luiz Inácio da Silva declared in her victory speech that her “mission is to eradicate poverty,” CNN reports. A left-wing fighter under Brazil’s 1960s military dictatorship, Rousseff beat centrist José Serra, a former governor of Sao Paulo and health minister; she took 56% of the vote, the AP notes.

“I hope the fathers and mothers of little girls will look at them and say yes, women can,” Rousseff said.

Supporters of Brazil's President-elect Dilma Rousseff wait for her during the victory rally in Brasilia, Brazil, Sunday Oct. 31, 2010.
Supporters of Brazil's President-elect Dilma Rousseff wait for her during the victory rally in Brasilia, Brazil, Sunday Oct. 31, 2010.   (AP Photo/Eraldo Peres)
Brazil's President-elect Dilma Rousseff, right, smiles as Vice President-elect Michel Temer applauds upon her arrival to give her victory speech, Sunday Oct. 31, 2010.
Brazil's President-elect Dilma Rousseff, right, smiles as Vice President-elect Michel Temer applauds upon her arrival to give her victory speech, Sunday Oct. 31, 2010.   (AP Photo/Eraldo Peres)
Brazil's President-elect Dilma Rousseff, of the Workers Party, waves to supporters as she arrives to give her victory speech after winning the election runoff in Brasilia, Brazil, Oct. 31, 2010.
Brazil's President-elect Dilma Rousseff, of the Workers Party, waves to supporters as she arrives to give her victory speech after winning the election runoff in Brasilia, Brazil, Oct. 31, 2010.   (AP Photo/Jorge Saenz)
Supporters of presidential candidate Dilma Rousseff celebrate preliminary election results in Sao Paulo, Brazil, Sunday Oct. 31, 2010.
Supporters of presidential candidate Dilma Rousseff celebrate preliminary election results in Sao Paulo, Brazil, Sunday Oct. 31, 2010.   (AP Photo/Silvia Izquierdo)
A supporter of Brazil's President-elect Dilma Rousseff applauds with her picture stuck on his forehead during the victory rally in Brasilia, Brazil, Sunday Oct. 31, 2010.
A supporter of Brazil's President-elect Dilma Rousseff applauds with her picture stuck on his forehead during the victory rally in Brasilia, Brazil, Sunday Oct. 31, 2010.   (AP Photo/Eraldo Peres)
Jose Serra, presidential candidate of the Brazilian Social Democracy Party, reacts as he delivers his concession speech in Sao Paulo, Brazil, Sunday, Oct. 31, 2010.
Jose Serra, presidential candidate of the Brazilian Social Democracy Party, reacts as he delivers his concession speech in Sao Paulo, Brazil, Sunday, Oct. 31, 2010.   (AP Photo/Andre Penner)
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