Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva

Brazil leader scraps bid, supports ex-finance minister

Acknowledging the unlikelihood of his re-election, Brazil's deeply unpopular president on Tuesday said he wasn't running and endorsed his former finance minister for the top office less than five months before voters in Latin America's largest nation pick a new leader.

President Michel Temer's decision to back former Finance Minister Henrique Meirelles came after months of weighing whether to run himself. Temer's approval rating has consistently been below 10 percent — at one point it reached 3 percent — and mounting corruption allegations against him have frequently drowned out his government's ambitious reform agenda.

"Meirelles is the best of the best," Temer...