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The symbolism of Xi Jinping’s choice of district

op politics and current affairs news for April 21, 2017. Part of the daily SupChina news roundup "Toxic ponds near Beijing."
4 days ago
Lucas Niewenhuis

There are no open elections to national-level political positions in China, so the news earlier this week that President Xi Jinping had won a seat as a delegate to the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC) was unremarkable on the surface. But today, the Wall Street Journal has a piece exploring the meaning behind Xi’s unusual choice of district to “run” from: the poor, southwestern province of Guizhou, where he has neither lived nor held office in his life. One former top political science professor tells the Journal that Xi is “sharing a platform” with Chen Miner 陈敏尔, the Guizhou Party chief whose poverty alleviation focus dovetails with Xi’s rhetoric. Furthermore, it may signal that Chen is likely to gain a seat in the powerful 25-member Politburo when the new CPC National Congress votes this fall.

By Lucas Niewenhuis
Lucas Niewenhuis is an associate editor at SupChina who helps curate daily news and produce the company's newsletter, app, and website content. Previously, Lucas researched China-Africa relations at the Social Science Research Council and interned at the Council on Foreign Relations in New York. He has studied Chinese language and culture in Shanghai and Beijing, and is a graduate of the University of Michigan.
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