Politburo Standing Committee of the Communist Party of China


Politburo Standing Committee of the Communist Party of China

The Politburo Standing Committee of the Communist Party of China (PSC; zh-stp|s=中国共产党中央政治局常务委员会|t=中國共產黨中央政治局常務委員會|p=Zhōngguó Gòngchǎndǎng Zhōngyāng Zhèngzhìjú Chángwù Wěiyuánhuì, abbreviated zh-sp|s=政治局常委|p=Zhèngzhìjú Chángwěi) is a committee whose membership varies between 5 and 9 people, usually men, and includes the top leadership of the Communist Party of China. The inner workings of the PSC are not well known, although it is believed that decisions of the PSC are made by consensus. Formally the membership of the Committee is approved by the Central Committee. In practice, the membership of the PSC is the result of negotiations among the top leadership of the Communist Party.

Currently the Politburo Standing Committee acts as the "de facto" highest decision-making body in China. Its membership is closely followed by both the national media as well as political watchers abroad. Historically, the role of the PSC has varied and evolved. During the Cultural Revolution, for example, the PSC had little power.

History

Throughout its existence, the actual power wielded by the PSC has varied widely from period to period. In the early days of the Cultural Revolution, for example, real power was concentrated in the Central Committee Cultural Revolution Group,Fact|date=December 2007 which was nominally subject to the Politburo Standing Committee but in fact dominated over the Standing Committee. In 1969, the Cultural Revolution Group was abolished, with those of its members who were most loyal to Mao admitted into the PSC. The last years of the Cultural Revolution were dominated by internal chaos, and following Mao's death in October 1976, only two PSC members continued their official duties; namely, Ye Jianying and Hua Guofeng. Five of the Committee members had died in the last year, one (Deng Xiaoping) had been dismissed, and two (as members of the Gang of Four) were "quarantined for investigation".

After taking power in 1978, one of the goals of Deng Xiaoping was to strengthen the power of the party, a goal which he ironically undermined in 1989 when he ordered the military to intervene in the Tiananmen Protests of 1989 against the wishes of a majority of the PSC, and in which the party subsequently ousted a majority of the PSC.

Although Jiang Zemin stepped down from this powerful committee to make way for a younger fourth generation of leadership led by Hu Jintao, Jiang may continue to wield significant influence. Five or six out of the nine new members of the Standing Committee, Wu Bangguo, Jia Qinglin, Zeng Qinghong, Li Changchun and sometimes Wu Guanzheng are Jiang protégés. The 22-member Politburo is elected by the Party's central committee. At the 2002 16th Party Congress, the Standing Committee was expanded to include nine members. The PSC has always included an odd number of members to avoid deadlocks. For speculations about the incoming PSC members, see Generations of Chinese leadership.

Current members (in order of protocol)

"note: current order may be temporary, although they will be employed for the time being by state media. The protocol order of the remaining five will be determined as their portfolios are modified."

Historical makeup of the PSC

16th PSC (2002 - 2007):

* Hu Jintao - President of the People's Republic of China, General Secretary of the CPC, Chairman of the Central Military Commission.
* Wu Bangguo - Chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress
* Wen Jiabao - Premier of the State Council of the People's Republic of China
* Jia Qinglin - Chairman of the People's Political Consultative Conference
* Zeng Qinghong - Vice-President of the People's Republic of China
* Huang Ju, Vice-Premier, died in office June 2007
* Wu Guanzheng - Secretary of the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection
* Li Changchun - no other positions held, known to many who as the propaganda chief
* Luo Gan - Political and Legislative Affairs Committee secretary

Interestingly, all nine members of the 16th PSC are university trained engineers.

15th PSC (1997 - 2002)
* Jiang Zemin (also General Secretary, Chinese Communist Party; President, People's Republic of China; Chairman, Central Military Commission)
* Li Peng (also Chairman, Standing Committee of the National People's Congress)
* Zhu Rongji (also Premier of the State Council)
* Li Ruihuan (also Chairman, Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference)
* Hu Jintao (also Vice President, People's Republic of China; Vice Chairman, Central Military Commission)
* Wei Jianxing (also Secretary, Central Disciplinary Inspection Commission)
* Li Lanqing (also Executive Vice Premier)

14th PSC (1992 - 1997)
* Jiang Zemin - President
* Li Peng - Premier
* Qiao Shi - NPC Standing Committee Chairman
* Li Ruihuan - CPPCC Chairman
* Zhu Rongji - Executive Vice-Premier
* Liu Huaqing - CMC Vice-Chairman
* Hu Jintao - Vice-President

13th PSC (1987 - 1992)
* Li Peng - Premier
* Hu Qili
* Qiao Shi
* Yao Yilin
* Zhao Ziyang - General Secretary (dismissed 1989)

12th PSC (1982 - 1987)
* Deng Xiaoping - Chairman of the Central Military Commission
* Chen Yun
* Hu Yaobang - General Secretary
* Li Xiannian - State President
* Ye Jianying
* Zhao Ziyang - Premier

11th PSC (1977 - 1982)
* Deng Xiaoping
* Hua Guofeng
* Li Xiannian
* Wang Dongxing
* Ye Jianying

10th PSC (1973 - 1977)
* Mao Zedong (died in office, September 1976)
* Zhou Enlai (died in office, January 1976)
* Wang Hongwen (membership suspended for investigation, October 1976)
* Zhu De (died in office, July 1976)
* Ye Jianying
* Dong Biwu (died in office, April 1975)
* Kang Sheng (died in office, December 1975)
* Li Desheng (resigned )
* Zhang Chunqiao (membership suspended for investigation, October 1976)
* Deng Xiaoping (elected January 1975, membership suspended April 1976)
* Hua Guofeng (elected April 1976)

9th PSC (1969 - 1973)
* Mao Zedong - Chairman of the Party
* Lin Biao - Vice-Chairman of the Party (Died in plane crash, 1971)
* Chen Boda
* Zhou Enlai - Premier
* Kang Sheng

8th PSC (1956 - 1969)
* Mao Zedong - Chairman of the Party
* Zhou Enlai - Premier
* Chen Yun
* Deng Xiaoping - General Secretary
* Lin Biao - Minister of Defence
* Liu Shaoqi - State President
* Zhu De - Grand Marshal

7th "De facto" PSC (pre 1956) Often known as the "Big Five". Note: PSC originally termed the Party "Secretariat"
* Mao Zedong - Chairman of the Party
* Zhou Enlai - Premier
* Chen Yun (elevated in 1950 following Ren Bishi's death)
* Liu Shaoqi
* Zhu De

ee also

* Politics of the People's Republic of China
* Political position ranking of the People's Republic of China
* Politburo of the Communist Party of China

References


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