Brazilian President Says He ‘Won’t Resign’ Amid Corruption Claims

Brazilian President Michel Temer has pushed back against calls for him to step down over recent corruption allegations, saying Thursday he will fight accusations that he was involved in a coverup scandal. As the country’s highest court opened an investigation Thursday into allegations Temer paid bribes to a jailed lawmaker, the Brazilian leader gave a national address denying the charges. “At no time did I authorize the paying of anyone,” Temer said. “I did not buy anybody’s silence. I will not resign,” he said. On Wednesday, the country’s O Globo newspaper released an audio recording that had allegedly captured Temer endorsing a payment to a former lawmaker who was jailed on corruption charges. A man identified as Temer by O Globo can be heard in the recording saying the jailed lawmaker could embarrass him. Another man says he “settled everything” with the lawmaker and he “came and collected.” The second man, purported to be Temer, then responds that he has to “keep that up.” Temer has been embroiled in controversy ever since he took office last year, with eight of his cabinet members under investigation for corruption by April. In the wake of the allegations published Wednesday, opposition politicians have demanded Temer’s ouster, and some cabinet ministers were reportedly considering stepping down.