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Brazil Votes in Runoff to Choose President

Brazilians vote Sunday in the second and final round of their presidential election. Polls leading up to the balloting show incumbent Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva winning with ease. But a particularly contentious campaign has exposed class divisions in the country and charges of ethical rot at the core of Lula's administration.

If the twenty-point lead that authoritative polls give Lula holds, it would represent a remarkable comeback. Four weeks ago, a stunned President Lula failed to win outright re-election in the first round when his conservative rival, former Sao Paulo governor, Geraldo Alckmin, scored a surprisingly strong second-place finish.

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Julie McCarthy has spent most of career traveling the world for NPR. She's covered wars, prime ministers, presidents and paupers. But her favorite stories "are about the common man or woman doing uncommon things," she says.