New China Hierarchy May Limit President’s Power – Joseph Kahn

From New York Times:

After intensive bargaining, China’s Communist Party has approved a new leadership lineup that denies President Hu Jintao the decisive consolidation of power that his supporters hoped would allow him to govern more assertively in his final five-year term as China’s top leader.

The party’s Central Committee agreed to elevate four senior officials to the ruling Politburo Standing Committee, but only one of them, Li Keqiang, the party secretary of Liaoning Province, clearly owed his rise in the hierarchy to Mr. Hu’s patronage, people told about the results of a Central Committee meeting said Friday.

Xi Jinping, the party boss of Shanghai, is also expected to join the Standing Committee. He would outrank Mr. Li and become the most likely successor to Mr. Hu as party chief, head of state and top military official in 2012, the people said. [Full Text]

For more seemingly endless coverage of predictions of who will be promoted at the 17th Party Congress next week, see:

– “Few signs of democratic progress as China prepares to pick new leaders” from Globe and Mail

– “China president’s favored successor slipping” from McClatchy

– “China’s Leaders Look for Heirs Apparent” from AP

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