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Bachelet wins Chile election landslide, plans reforms

Michelle Bachelet casts her vote during Sunday''s run-off. AFP PHOTO

Michelle Bachelet was elected as Chile's president again in a landslide victory that should hand the center-leftist the mandate she sought to push ahead with wide-reaching reforms.

With nearly 70 percent of votes counted, Bachelet had about 63 percent support, the highest proportion of votes any presidential candidate has won since Chile returned to holding democratic elections in 1989.

Evelyn Matthei, the conservative candidate of the ruling Alianza coalition, managed only 37 percent of the vote, the right's worst performance in two decades.

Bachelet, who led Chile between 2006 and 2010 as its first female leader, will look to capitalize on her resounding win to make changes aimed at redressing persistent inequality in the world's top copper exporter.

A physician by training, Bachelet is a moderate socialist and has promised 50 reforms in her first 100 days, once she takes office in March.

Her flagship policy is a hike in corporate taxes to 25 percent from 20 percent, to pay for social reforms that include a gradual move to free higher education.

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Tags:  Chile. Bachelet  elections  


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