The absence of certain groups – such as women, homosexuals, blacks, browns etc. – from political representation has become a central theme in the public debate and academia. However, the extensive bibliography dedicated to the under representation of women in Brazil stands in contrast when compared to the few works on the political marginality of non-whites. In order to fill in this gap, this article discusses the data from a survey on the color of candidates in municipal council elections in 2012 in Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo. Given the lack of official records on the self-declared color of the candidates, almost three thousand photographs, obtained from the Electoral Superior Court, were submitted to classification by a team of researchers. The results allow the authors to question the hypothesis that left-wing parties are more open to non-whites than right-wing denominations. More importantly, they indicated that the marginalization of non-whites from representation cannot be attributed exclusively to shortcomings in recruitment.
race; color; elections; political recruitment; political parties