Move opens the way for Xi Jinping to stay in office for a long-time.
China’s leader Xi Jinping has already rolled back any movement towards freedom in China.
The press, universities, and the military have all been brought under even more Communist Party centralized control, and power has been concentrated in the hands of one leader (Xi), in contrast to a move towards a more team-oriented structure.
Now, China’s government is set to become even more dictatorial.
A plan to change the constitution and abolish Presidential term limits would let Xi Jinping stay in power for a long time.
As noted by the South China Morning Post, “If confirmed at the end of the annual National People’s Congress session next month, the removal of the remaining constitutional barrier on presidential term limits would open the door for President Xi Jinping to stay in power for as long as he liked, just like other authoritarian potentates, analysts said.”
Former diplomat Robert Daly said the move could help strengthen the contrast between China and democratic nations:
“The US and other democratic nations should use this latest, clearest Chinese rejection of democracy to highlight the importance of transparency, representative governance, and liberal institutions worldwide. Without such a counter-example, a growing number of countries will credit the purported confidence and competence of what is, undeniably now, Xi’s China.”
Hwang Jae-ho from the Hankuk University of Foreign Studies in South Korea explained the key problem with all authoritarian regimes:
“When Xi becomes authoritarian and has few people making good suggestions, it will be easier for Xi to make wrong decisions; and for the same reason, if wrong decisions come out, the possibility of being corrected quickly is low.”
China’s move towards an even more stepped-up dictatorship shows how they are at odds with the values of Western civilization, and should be disturbing to all who advocate for democracy.
A lack of term limits can be acceptable – though not ideal – in a country where leaders can be voted out in free elections. But in a nation without free elections, term limits at least created a structural possibility for minimal renewal. With that gone, China has become even more authoritarian.
Don’t expect Trudeau to condemn or even issue a statement of concern about China’s latest move, as he sees much to admire in the ruthless Communist state.
Photo – YouTube