3 January 2022

All outlets focus on the first televised leaders debates involving current Prime Minister António Costa and Rui Tavares of Livre, and between Catarina Martins of the Left Bloc party and André Ventura of the right-wing Chega party.

Leading with the debate between Costa and Tavares, Lusa and TSF note Costa attacked the parties on the left, which voted against the budget that brought about the fall of his government, by calling on the electorate to “punish those who created this crisis”. Jornal de Notícias adds Costa has confirmed he will resign should the PS lose the election. RTP and DN state Costa is calling for a stable Socialist Party government, warning against “uncertainty about the future”, with Público adding he has only one plan – an absolute majority – and that it would be a mistake to repeat the minority geringonça government of 2015-19. However, CNN Portugal and TSF report him responding to Tavares’ challenge to have a written agreement with smaller parties by saying that while “a majority does not mean governing alone”, only the PS will “rid the country of the right”. CNN Portugal and Jornal de Notícias report on the debate between Catarina Martins of the Left Bloc and André Ventura of the Chega party, in which Martins accused Ventura of sounding like a “broken record”, with Ventura stating he will do all he can “to get António Costa out of power”.

Lusa reports on the hacking of Grupo Imprensa websites, including the Expresso newspaper and SIC News, noting the news group will take legal action against those responsible.

Público carries a report on exhausted health professionals and their hopes the vaccine has changed the outlook of the pandemic and that this latest wave will not hit hospitals like “a tsunami”.

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