Teaching Comparative Government and Politics

Monday, March 09, 2009

More analysis of factionalism in China

Following up on Cheng Li's analysis of factionalism among the power elite in China, comes the report of this speech by Wu Bangguo at the National Peoples Congress in Beijing. Western and non-Chinese news sources picked up on Wu's comments about democracy.

Which faction does Wu represent? Do his views fit into the system described (hypothesized?) by Cheng Li?

China 'will not have democracy'

"China will never adopt Western-style democracy with a multi-party system, its top legislator has said.

"Parliament chief [Chairman of the NPC Standing Committee] Wu Bangguo said that China would draw on the achievements of all cultures but would not 'simply copy' the West.

"Communist Party leadership should be strengthened and "the correct political orientation" maintained, he said.

"Mr Wu made the comments in a speech to the National People's Congress, China's annual parliament session.

"He ranks second only to President Hu Jintao in the Communist Party hierarchy..."


The report from China's official Xinhua news agency didn't see the governance issue as an especially important part of Wu's report. There were a dozen topics of Wu's speech listed (earthquake relief, economic development, protecting public health, etc.).

"Party Leadership" was the next to last item. Here's what Xinhua reported.

"PARTY LEADERSHIP

" Through the work of the NPC, The NPC Standing Committee must ensure that the stands of the Party become the will of the state through legally stipulated procedures and that the personnel recommended by Party organizations become the leaders of the organs of state power through legally stipulated procedures.

"The NPC Standing Committee must draw on the achievements of all cultures, including their political achievements, but will never simply copy the system of Western countries or introduce a system of multiple parties holding office in rotation, a system with the separation of the three powers or a bicameral system."

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