When communist party candidates can lose, who wins? Assessing the role of local people's congresses in the selection of leaders in China

Journal Article (Journal Article)

This article draws on Party and government documents, Chinese-language books and articles, interviews and firsthand observation, and electoral outcome data to contribute to the emerging literature on the changing role of people's congresses in mainland China. It focuses on the crucially important but neglected relationship between local congresses and local Communist Party committees in the selection of congress and government leaders. It analyses the 1995 reforms to Party regulations and the law, which resulted in electoral losses of more than 17,000 Communist Party candidates in the first set of elections after 1995. It concludes that the reforms created the conditions for local congress delegates to matter - and delegates responded. More broadly, it concludes that congressional assertiveness has significant (although not radical) implications for the relationship between the congresses and Party committees. The winners in the broader (not narrowly electoral) sense of the term are both the congresses and the ruling Communist Party, strengthened as an organization with selection of leaders opened up to more players. © 2008 The China Quarterly.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Manion, M

Published Date

  • September 22, 2008

Published In

Start / End Page

  • 607 - 630

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1468-2648

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0305-7410

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1017/S0305741008000799

Citation Source

  • Scopus