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The Senate in the New Republic

With the death of the elected President Tancredo Neves in 1985, his vice-President, then Senator José Sarney,

became the President of the Republic. During his term, by a message derived from the Executive Branch, the Constitutional Amendment n 26, from 27th of November of 1985 was passed, which created the Constitucional Convention. This Constitutional Convention worked hard to restore the Brazilian citizenship, which resulted in the current Constitution of 1988, that signalized a legal framework of the new time of freedom and democracy in the country and was nicknamed “Citizen Constitution.” And the Senate once again played an important role in the national political debate.

In 1992, the Senate, after investigation by a parliamentary commission of inquiry, removed the then President of the Republic, Fernando Collor de Mello. Due to this removal, assumed Office of the President, his Vice President, Itamar Franco, political figure who had excelled himself in the national scenario as senator. The year 1993 was marked by many turmoil in the Congress. The Parliamentary Committee of Investigation (PCI) on Budget was established, which investigated the parliamentarians responsible for drafting the Government Budget, where a scheme of public money misappropriation was unveiled. Eighteen members of the budget committee were mentioned in the PCI final report. Six of them were dismissed, eight were acquitted and four resigned their mandate, among them the Representative João Alves, considered the frauds’ mentor.

Another highlight in 1993 was the inauguration and beginning of the  Federal Constitution revision, which continued in 1994. In 1995, Fernando Henrique Cardoso another politician from the Federal Senate became president of the Republic, and was re-elected in 1999.

During this period, important laws were passed in the Parliament: in 1995, the Quotas Act for women's political representation; in 1996, the National Education Guidelines and Bases Law; and, in 1997, the Fiscal Accountability Law, to impose limits on government expenditures.