Airline magnate Sebastian Pinera won nearly 52 percent of Sunday's vote with more than 99 percent of ballots counted, and his leftist rival, former President Eduardo Frei, quickly conceded defeat.
The victory by Pinera, a Harvard-educated airline magnate, marks a shift to the right in South America, a region dominated by leftist rulers from Venezuela to Argentina, although no major changes to economic policy are expected.
Many Chileans were disenchanted with the ruling center-left "Concertacion" coalition that has governed since the end of Gen. Augusto Pinochet's 1973-1990 dictatorship.
Pinera supporters danced in the streets, waving red, white and blue Chilean flags. It was the first time that Chile's political right, which backed Pinochet's bloody dictatorship, has democratically won the presidency for over 50 years.........
I'm happy for Chile and I hope he is an honest man who has strong pro-life and pro-family values.