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Chavez Names New Vice President


Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez has replaced his vice president and plans to make at least 12 more Cabinet changes.

He named Ramon Carrizales, a housing minister, to replace Vice President Jorge Rodriguez.

The Cabinet reshuffle comes after Venezuelans rejected constitutional reforms that would have greatly expanded the president's power. It was the first electoral defeat for Mr. Chavez in nine years.

The reforms would have allowed Mr. Chavez, who has vowed to transform Venezuela into a socialist state, to seek re-election indefinitely.

The proposals also would have abolished the Central Bank's independence, limited individual rights under states of emergency and created new forms of community-owned property.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and Reuters.

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