August 13, 2015 / 12:31 AM / 4 years ago

UPDATE 1-Brazil's president says not resigning despite calls for impeachment

(Adds Rousseff comments and context)

SAO PAULO, Aug 12 (Reuters) - Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff said on Wednesday she would not consider quitting despite calls for her impeachment from opponents in Congress as the economy sinks and her popularity hits record lows.

In an interview with SBT channel, Rousseff said the ongoing political crisis should not weigh down efforts to revive Brazil’s flagging economy that she believes will improve by year-end.

“I would never consider quitting,” Rousseff said. “The coup-mongering culture exists, but there are no conditions for that to happen.”

Rousseff, a technocrat who had never run for public office before ascending to the presidency in 2011, is struggling to contain a rebellion in Congress that threatens her hold on office.

With only seven months into her second term, Rousseff has suffered a rash of defeats in Congress that has complicated efforts to rebalance public accounts to avoid losing Brazil’s investment-grade rating.

Some of her opponents have said Rousseff should step down due to allegations of illegal campaign financing and attempts to doctor the national budget last year.

In the interview, Rousseff said she does not believe the country will lose its investment grade and that the country’s debt burden will not surpass the 70 percent of GDP mark. Brazil’s gross debt has jumped to 63 percent of GDP in June from 59 percent just six months prior.

Facing a rapidly deteriorating economy, Rousseff succeeded in striking a deal with the Senate this week to seek a market-friendly agenda to counter an open rebellion in the Lower House of Congress.

Despite the easing political tensions her administration is bracing for a nationwide demonstration on Sunday calling for her impeachment. (Reporting by Guillermo Parra-Bernal and Eduardo Simões; Writing by Alonso Soto; Editing by Lisa Shumaker)

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