SANTIAGO, Chile – Chilean President Michelle Bachelet has named a new Cabinet, hoping the changes will arrest the fall in her popularity ratings and overcome scandals that have rocked her administration.
The most dramatic change Monday appears to be the arrival of banker Rodrigo Valdes as her new finance minister, replacing Alberto Arenas. It's the first time since the return of democracy in 1990 that a president has replaced the finance minister.
Bachelet also is replacing her Cabinet chief, as well as the ministers of justice, labor, defense, social development and culture.
Bachelet is trying to salvage an ambitious reform package that includes an education overhaul, the legalization of abortion in some case and changing the dictatorship-era constitution.
Bachelet surprised the country last week by announcing she was overhauling the whole Cabinet.