Exit polls show Cardoso overwhelming winner in Brazil election

RIO DE JANEIRO, Brazil (AP) — Facing an uncertain economic future, Brazilians stuck with the incumbent for the first time in their history Sunday and re-elected Fernando Henrique Cardoso as president, exit polls showed.
Cardoso won with 56 percent of the vote compared to 29 percent for his closest rival, former labor leader Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva of the Workers Party, surveys conducted by the respected Ibope polling institute said. Ibope questioned 54,000 voters nationwide.
The outcome was no surprise. Cardoso, a 67-year-old sociologist, was the overwhelming favorite in Sunday’s national elections, getting a boost from voters’ fear of a deepening economic crisis.
About 106 million voters went to the polls Sunday to choose a president, 27 governors, all 513 federal deputies, a third of the 81-seat Senate and 1,405 state legislators. Voting is mandatory for Brazilians between the ages of 18 and 70.