Trump says he'd welcome Brazilian president's son as ambassador

Brazil's president has come under criticism for his decision to appoint his son (above) to one of the most important posts for Brazilian diplomats.
Brazil's president has come under criticism for his decision to appoint his son (above) to one of the most important posts for Brazilian diplomats.PHOTO: REUTERS

WASHINGTON (AFP) - President Donald Trump on Tuesday (July 30) effusively praised the idea of Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro sending his son as ambassador to the United States in the latest flourish of bromance between the two right-wing leaders.

"I think it's a great appointment," Trump - who counts his daughter Ivanka and son-in-law Jared Kushner among his most senior advisors - told reporters, calling Eduardo Bolsonaro, 35, "outstanding."

The idea, floated by President Bolsonaro, has sparked controversy in Brazil, where professional diplomats typically staff embassies.

The push for Eduardo Bolsonaro to take the coveted job also clashes with his father's promise on election last year to fight cronyism, along with other aspects of rampant corruption in Latin America's biggest country.

But Trump said he saw no problem: "I don't think it's nepotism."

Eduardo Bolsonaro, who heads the foreign affairs committee in the lower house of Congress in Brazil, has no previous diplomatic experience.

Touting his credentials to be Brazil's envoy to Washington, he earlier this month cited his experience of flipping hamburgers in the United States as a relevant skill.

"I did an exchange, I fried hamburgers," Eduardo Bolsonaro told reporters, also pointing to his role on the foreign affairs committee as further evidence of his suitability for the job.

He is a noted enthusiast of the US president and his father Jair Bolsonaro is sometimes known as the "Trump of Brazil".

The Brazilian president has likewise denied any nepotism problem and argues that his son would automatically receive special access in Washington because of his personal links to Trump.