Biden Gives Lula ‘Unwavering’ Support, Invites Him To White House

WASHINGTON, DC - DECEMBER 08: U.S. President Joe Biden delivers remarks about unions and pensions in the South Court Auditorium at the Eisenhower Executive Office Building on December 08, 2022 in Washington, DC. A week after working to halt a rail workers strike, Biden announced that $36 billion of the American Rescue Plan will go to preventing cuts to the pensions of roughly 357,000 union workers and retirees. Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images/AFP (Photo by CHIP SOMODEVILLA / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / Getty Images via AFP)

US President Joe Biden conveyed “unwavering” support to Brazil’s new president, Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, in a phone call Monday and invited him to the White House next month.

“President Biden conveyed the unwavering support of the United States for Brazil’s democracy,” the White House said in a statement, adding that Biden, who is in Mexico City for a summit, invited Lula to visit him in “early February.”

Lula accepted the invite, according to the statement.

The phone call came the day after supporters of Lula’s defeated right-wing rival, ex-president Jair Bolsonaro, stormed into the seat of government in the Brazilian capital Brasilia.

Their attack, fueled by the Bolsonaro camp’s repeated false assertions that last year’s election was stolen, echoed an assault by supporters of ex-president Donald Trump on the US Capitol soon after he lost his 2020 election to Biden.

World leaders have closed ranks around Lula, a veteran leftist politician and already a former president of Latin America’s most populous country.

Biden told Lula of his support for “the free will of the Brazilian people as expressed in Brazil’s recent presidential election, which President Lula won. President Biden condemned the violence and the attack on democratic institutions and on the peaceful transfer of power,” the statement said.

“The two leaders pledged to work closely together on the issues confronting the United States and Brazil, including climate change, economic development, and peace and security,” the statement said, describing the February meeting in Washington as a chance for “in-depth consultations on a wide-ranging shared agenda.”