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Pictures | Sat Jan 5, 2013 | 5:50pm EST

Venezuela lawmakers elect Chavez ally as Assembly chief

Venezuelan Vice President Nicolas Maduro (L) listens to National Assembly President Diosdado Cabello speak during the assembly inauguration in Caracas January 5, 2013. Venezuelan lawmakers re-elected a staunch ally of Hugo Chavez to head the National Assembly on Saturday, putting him in line to be caretaker president if the socialist leader does not recover from cancer surgery. By choosing the incumbent, Cabello, the "Chavista"-dominated legislature cemented the combative ex-soldier's position as the third most powerful figure in the government, after Chavez and Vice President Maduro. REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins

Venezuelan Vice President Nicolas Maduro (L) listens to National Assembly President Diosdado Cabello speak during the assembly inauguration in Caracas January 5, 2013. Venezuelan lawmakers re-elected a staunch ally of Hugo Chavez to head the National...more

Venezuelan Vice President Nicolas Maduro (L) listens to National Assembly President Diosdado Cabello speak during the assembly inauguration in Caracas January 5, 2013. Venezuelan lawmakers re-elected a staunch ally of Hugo Chavez to head the National Assembly on Saturday, putting him in line to be caretaker president if the socialist leader does not recover from cancer surgery. By choosing the incumbent, Cabello, the "Chavista"-dominated legislature cemented the combative ex-soldier's position as the third most powerful figure in the government, after Chavez and Vice President Maduro. REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins
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Venezuelan Vice President Nicolas Maduro (L) arrives with National Assembly President Diosdado Cabello during the assembly inauguration in Caracas January 5, 2013. Venezuelan lawmakers re-elected a staunch ally of Hugo Chavez to head the National Assembly on Saturday, putting him in line to be caretaker president if the socialist leader does not recover from cancer surgery. By choosing the incumbent, Cabello, the "Chavista"-dominated legislature cemented the combative ex-soldier's position as the third most powerful figure in the government, after Chavez and Vice President Nicolas Maduro. REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins

Venezuelan Vice President Nicolas Maduro (L) arrives with National Assembly President Diosdado Cabello during the assembly inauguration in Caracas January 5, 2013. Venezuelan lawmakers re-elected a staunch ally of Hugo Chavez to head the National...more

Venezuelan Vice President Nicolas Maduro (L) arrives with National Assembly President Diosdado Cabello during the assembly inauguration in Caracas January 5, 2013. Venezuelan lawmakers re-elected a staunch ally of Hugo Chavez to head the National Assembly on Saturday, putting him in line to be caretaker president if the socialist leader does not recover from cancer surgery. By choosing the incumbent, Cabello, the "Chavista"-dominated legislature cemented the combative ex-soldier's position as the third most powerful figure in the government, after Chavez and Vice President Nicolas Maduro. REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins
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Venezuelan Vice President Nicolas Maduro (L) embraces National Assembly President Diosdado Cabello during the assembly inauguration in Caracas January 5, 2013. Venezuelan lawmakers re-elected a staunch ally of Hugo Chavez to head the National Assembly on Saturday, putting him in line to be caretaker president if the socialist leader does not recover from cancer surgery. By choosing the incumbent, Cabello, the "Chavista"-dominated legislature cemented the combative ex-soldier's position as the third most powerful figure in the government, after Chavez and Vice President Maduro. REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins

Venezuelan Vice President Nicolas Maduro (L) embraces National Assembly President Diosdado Cabello during the assembly inauguration in Caracas January 5, 2013. Venezuelan lawmakers re-elected a staunch ally of Hugo Chavez to head the National...more

Venezuelan Vice President Nicolas Maduro (L) embraces National Assembly President Diosdado Cabello during the assembly inauguration in Caracas January 5, 2013. Venezuelan lawmakers re-elected a staunch ally of Hugo Chavez to head the National Assembly on Saturday, putting him in line to be caretaker president if the socialist leader does not recover from cancer surgery. By choosing the incumbent, Cabello, the "Chavista"-dominated legislature cemented the combative ex-soldier's position as the third most powerful figure in the government, after Chavez and Vice President Maduro. REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins
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Venezuelan National Assembly President Diosdado Cabello attends an assembly inauguration in Caracas January 5, 2013. Venezuelan lawmakers re-elected a staunch ally of Hugo Chavez to head the National Assembly on Saturday, putting him in line to be caretaker president if the socialist leader does not recover from cancer surgery. By choosing the incumbent, Cabello, the "Chavista"-dominated legislature cemented the combative ex-soldier's position as the third most powerful figure in the government, after Chavez and Vice President Nicolas Maduro. REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins

Venezuelan National Assembly President Diosdado Cabello attends an assembly inauguration in Caracas January 5, 2013. Venezuelan lawmakers re-elected a staunch ally of Hugo Chavez to head the National Assembly on Saturday, putting him in line to be...more

Venezuelan National Assembly President Diosdado Cabello attends an assembly inauguration in Caracas January 5, 2013. Venezuelan lawmakers re-elected a staunch ally of Hugo Chavez to head the National Assembly on Saturday, putting him in line to be caretaker president if the socialist leader does not recover from cancer surgery. By choosing the incumbent, Cabello, the "Chavista"-dominated legislature cemented the combative ex-soldier's position as the third most powerful figure in the government, after Chavez and Vice President Nicolas Maduro. REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins
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Venezuelan National Assembly President Diosdado Cabello (R) speaks next to Venezuela's Vice President Nicolas Maduro during a visit to Fama de America's coffee processing plant in Caracas January 3, 2013. REUTERS/Miraflores Palace/Handout

Venezuelan National Assembly President Diosdado Cabello (R) speaks next to Venezuela's Vice President Nicolas Maduro during a visit to Fama de America's coffee processing plant in Caracas January 3, 2013. REUTERS/Miraflores Palace/Handout

Venezuelan National Assembly President Diosdado Cabello (R) speaks next to Venezuela's Vice President Nicolas Maduro during a visit to Fama de America's coffee processing plant in Caracas January 3, 2013. REUTERS/Miraflores Palace/Handout
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Venezuelan Vice President Nicolas Maduro (L) embraces National Assembly President Diosdado Cabello during the assembly inauguration in Caracas January 5, 2013. Venezuelan lawmakers re-elected a staunch ally of Hugo Chavez to head the National Assembly on Saturday, putting him in line to be caretaker president if the socialist leader does not recover from cancer surgery. By choosing the incumbent, Cabello, the "Chavista"-dominated legislature cemented the combative ex-soldier's position as the third most powerful figure in the government, after Chavez and Vice President Maduro. REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins

Venezuelan Vice President Nicolas Maduro (L) embraces National Assembly President Diosdado Cabello during the assembly inauguration in Caracas January 5, 2013. Venezuelan lawmakers re-elected a staunch ally of Hugo Chavez to head the National...more

Venezuelan Vice President Nicolas Maduro (L) embraces National Assembly President Diosdado Cabello during the assembly inauguration in Caracas January 5, 2013. Venezuelan lawmakers re-elected a staunch ally of Hugo Chavez to head the National Assembly on Saturday, putting him in line to be caretaker president if the socialist leader does not recover from cancer surgery. By choosing the incumbent, Cabello, the "Chavista"-dominated legislature cemented the combative ex-soldier's position as the third most powerful figure in the government, after Chavez and Vice President Maduro. REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins
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Venezuelan Vice President Nicolas Maduro (L) arrives with National Assembly President Diosdado Cabello during the assembly inauguration in Caracas January 5, 2013. Venezuelan lawmakers re-elected a staunch ally of Hugo Chavez to head the National Assembly on Saturday, putting him in line to be caretaker president if the socialist leader does not recover from cancer surgery. By choosing the incumbent, Cabello, the "Chavista"-dominated legislature cemented the combative ex-soldier's position as the third most powerful figure in the government, after Chavez and Vice President Maduro. REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins

Venezuelan Vice President Nicolas Maduro (L) arrives with National Assembly President Diosdado Cabello during the assembly inauguration in Caracas January 5, 2013. Venezuelan lawmakers re-elected a staunch ally of Hugo Chavez to head the National...more

Venezuelan Vice President Nicolas Maduro (L) arrives with National Assembly President Diosdado Cabello during the assembly inauguration in Caracas January 5, 2013. Venezuelan lawmakers re-elected a staunch ally of Hugo Chavez to head the National Assembly on Saturday, putting him in line to be caretaker president if the socialist leader does not recover from cancer surgery. By choosing the incumbent, Cabello, the "Chavista"-dominated legislature cemented the combative ex-soldier's position as the third most powerful figure in the government, after Chavez and Vice President Maduro. REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins
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Venezuelan Vice President Nicolas Maduro (L) embraces National Assembly President Diosdado Cabello during the assembly inauguration in Caracas January 5, 2013. Venezuelan lawmakers re-elected a staunch ally of Hugo Chavez to head the National Assembly on Saturday, putting him in line to be caretaker president if the socialist leader does not recover from cancer surgery. By choosing the incumbent, Cabello, the "Chavista"-dominated legislature cemented the combative ex-soldier's position as the third most powerful figure in the government, after Chavez and Vice President Maduro. REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins

Venezuelan Vice President Nicolas Maduro (L) embraces National Assembly President Diosdado Cabello during the assembly inauguration in Caracas January 5, 2013. Venezuelan lawmakers re-elected a staunch ally of Hugo Chavez to head the National...more

Venezuelan Vice President Nicolas Maduro (L) embraces National Assembly President Diosdado Cabello during the assembly inauguration in Caracas January 5, 2013. Venezuelan lawmakers re-elected a staunch ally of Hugo Chavez to head the National Assembly on Saturday, putting him in line to be caretaker president if the socialist leader does not recover from cancer surgery. By choosing the incumbent, Cabello, the "Chavista"-dominated legislature cemented the combative ex-soldier's position as the third most powerful figure in the government, after Chavez and Vice President Maduro. REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins
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Venezuelan Vice President Nicolas Maduro (L) listens to National Assembly President Diosdado Cabello speak during the assembly inauguration in Caracas January 5, 2013. Venezuelan lawmakers re-elected a staunch ally of Hugo Chavez to head the National Assembly on Saturday, putting him in line to be caretaker president if the socialist leader does not recover from cancer surgery. By choosing the incumbent, Cabello, the "Chavista"-dominated legislature cemented the combative ex-soldier's position as the third most powerful figure in the government, after Chavez and Vice President Maduro. REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins

Venezuelan Vice President Nicolas Maduro (L) listens to National Assembly President Diosdado Cabello speak during the assembly inauguration in Caracas January 5, 2013. Venezuelan lawmakers re-elected a staunch ally of Hugo Chavez to head the National...more

Venezuelan Vice President Nicolas Maduro (L) listens to National Assembly President Diosdado Cabello speak during the assembly inauguration in Caracas January 5, 2013. Venezuelan lawmakers re-elected a staunch ally of Hugo Chavez to head the National Assembly on Saturday, putting him in line to be caretaker president if the socialist leader does not recover from cancer surgery. By choosing the incumbent, Cabello, the "Chavista"-dominated legislature cemented the combative ex-soldier's position as the third most powerful figure in the government, after Chavez and Vice President Maduro. REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins
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Venezuelan Vice President Nicolas Maduro arrives at the national assembly inauguration in Caracas January 5, 2013. Venezuelan lawmakers re-elected a staunch ally of Hugo Chavez to head the National Assembly on Saturday, putting him in line to be caretaker president if the socialist leader does not recover from cancer surgery. By choosing the incumbent, Diosdado Cabello, the "Chavista"-dominated legislature cemented the combative ex-soldier's position as the third most powerful figure in the government, after Chavez and Vice President Maduro. REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins

Venezuelan Vice President Nicolas Maduro arrives at the national assembly inauguration in Caracas January 5, 2013. Venezuelan lawmakers re-elected a staunch ally of Hugo Chavez to head the National Assembly on Saturday, putting him in line to be...more

Venezuelan Vice President Nicolas Maduro arrives at the national assembly inauguration in Caracas January 5, 2013. Venezuelan lawmakers re-elected a staunch ally of Hugo Chavez to head the National Assembly on Saturday, putting him in line to be caretaker president if the socialist leader does not recover from cancer surgery. By choosing the incumbent, Diosdado Cabello, the "Chavista"-dominated legislature cemented the combative ex-soldier's position as the third most powerful figure in the government, after Chavez and Vice President Maduro. REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins
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