RIO DE JANEIRO — Television star Silvio Santos, a late entrant and formidable contender in Brazil's presidential race, lost his bid for election Thursday, six days before the scheduled vote. The Superior Electoral Tribunal ruled him ineligible to be a candidate.
One reason given for the Thursday night ruling was that the tiny Brazilian Municipalist Party sponsoring Santos is not legally registered. Another was that he failed to comply with a 1970 law requiring candidates to remove themselves from the management of any company with a public concession, such as a broadcast license.
Santos, 58, is the owner of Brazil's second-largest television network. He is also the star of a popular all-afternoon variety show aired by the network on Sundays.
After he announced his candidacy at the beginning of November, he quickly emerged among the top presidential contenders in public opinion polls, displacing other leading candidates. Several parties and the federal attorney general filed legal challenges with the Superior Electoral Tribunal this week.