30 Sep

On Twitter, Padre Kelmon outshines leading candidates in electoral polls during the last presidential debate on Globo

Updated 17 de October, 2022 at 10:03 am

  • The PTB candidate was a highlight on Twitter during the debate that generated the three major peaks of mentions in the period, such as “padre de festa junina (“midsummer priest”) and “candidato laranja” (“dummy candidate”);
  • Beyond questioning Padre Kelmon’s religious title and seeing his posture in the debate as inadequate, 75% of the profiles shared memes about the candidate’s statements.

The last presidential debate happened on Thursday (29) on Rede Globo, with significant repercussion on the social networks. From September 29 at 10 pm until September 30 at 1 pm, there were more than 4.73 million posts related to the episode on Twitter, according to a survey by the School of Communication, Media and Information at Fundação Getulio Vargas (FGV ECMI). Padre Kelmon was the main subject on the platform in this period, and was the topic of more than 2.14 million posts (approximately 45.3% of all tweets), standing out as much as the leading candidates on electoral polls, Jair Bolsonaro (PL) and Lula (PT), who appeared in 2.46 million tweets (around 45%) and 2.13 million tweets (around 51.9%), respectively.


Main words about the presidential debate on Globo on Twitter
Period: September 29 at 10 pm until September 30 at 1 pm

Source: Twitter | Elaborated by: FGV ECMI


Padre Kelmon was also responsible for the three moments with the highest engagement in the period. The first moment happened at 11:10 pm on Thursday (29), with 20.33 thousand mentions, in a discussion on Twitter about whether the candidate was actually a priest. The second moment happened at 11:45 pm, with 18.04 mentions, when, during a question and answer round, the candidate Soraya Thronicke (União Brasil) called Kelmon a “midsummer priest”, reverberating the extensive doubts about his title. The third moment happened on 00:20 am on Friday (30), with 17.01 mentions, after Lula refered to Kelmon as a “dummy candidate” due to his alleged support to Bolsonaro.


Map of interactions about the presidential debate on Globo on Twitter
Period: September 29 at 10 pm until September 30 at 1 pm


Source: Twitter | Elaborated by: FGV ECMI


Left wing (Red) – 35.02% of profiles | 37.82% of interactions
Grou formed around left-wing politicians, digital influencers, journalists and researchers criticizing the government, who questioned Padre Kelmon’s presence in the debate, since the candidate did not take the situation seriously, allegedly lied about his priest title, and implied several times a veiled support for Bolsonaro. The posts also showed indignation about Lula being the main target of the other candidates, classifying the performance of the current president as very bad in the debate.

Right wing (Blue) – 18.81% of profiles | 27.86% of interactions
Group composed of right-wing politicians, as well as conservative bloggers and digital influencers, suggesting that Globo wanted to protect Lula in the debate and praising Jair Bolsonaro when he attacked the channel during the program. There were also viral posts made by Kelmon’s official profile, in which he asked his supporters to pray for him and showed images of confrontations between himself and Lula. Some profiles criticized Soraya Thronicke due to the negative comments she made about the current president during the program.

Entertainment channels (Orange) – 24.64% of profiles | 20.75% of interactions
Group composed of entertainment channels of profiles of common users, who commented about the information that the Catholic Church did not recognize Padre Kelmon’s participation in activities related to the religious formative process, stating that the candidate has never been a bishop, presbyter or deacon. In addition, the posts commented on allegedly untruthful statements made by Bolsonaro regarding the purchase of vaccines to fight the Covid-19 pandemic.

Influencers (Pink) ‒ 11.16% of profiles | 8.21% of interactions
Group mobilized by profiles of common users and digital influencers, who remembered episodes involving candidates in previous elections, comparing them to Padre Kelmon and jokingly describing the PTB candidate’s participation in the debate. The posts also highlighted the fact that a female candidate, Soraya Thronicke, confronted and possibly irritated the priest. According to the tweets, the confrontation was allagedly associated with the excommunication of the American singer Madonna by the Catholic Church and could also signal a retaliation of contemporary times against the Middle Ages.

Center and influencers (Green) – 4.33% of profiles | 3.28% of interactions
Group mobilized by center politicians, digital influencers and comic profiles, making ironic remarks about Soraya’s courage when calling Padre Kelmon a “midsummer priest”, as well as Lula’s question to the candidate regarding hunger in Brazil. In addition, the posts highlighted William Bonner’s posture as the host of the debate. Bonner had to give Kelmon a warning regarding the rules of the debate and compared the priest’s behavior to that of the devil.

Major posts about the presidential debate on Globo on Twitter
Period: September 29 at 10 pm until September 30 at 1 pm


Source: Twitter | Elaborated by: FGV ECMI