Teaching Comparative Government and Politics

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Ideological amendments

Amendments to China's constitution don't look like amendments to the US constitution. The newest proposals are primarily ideological guides to government action.

Revisions to Chinese constitution will be key task for top cadres at plenum
A closed-door meeting of the Communist Party’s most powerful cadres begins on Thursday to discuss revisions to the constitution that include the addition of President Xi Jinping’s political theory…

The second plenum normally sets the tone for the upcoming National People’s Congress, when the new president, premier and other top cabinet figures will be formally named. This time, the two-day meeting will focus on the proposal to revise the constitution…

Next week’s meeting will discuss making the first amendments to the constitution for 14 years, which will then be endorsed by the NPC…

But a Beijing-based source familiar with the issue confirmed to the South China Morning Post that “Xi Jinping Thought” would be included in the preamble of the constitution.

The preamble states that the party is guided by Marxism and Leninism, Mao Zedong Thought, Deng Xiaoping Theory and the Three Represents – the latter three being the theoretical legacies of Mao, Deng and former president Jiang Zemin.

Xi’s tongue-twisting contribution to Chinese political theory – Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era – was enshrined in the party charter at the congress in October.

His interpretation of the “principal contradiction facing Chinese society” would also be added, along with some of his other ideas, according to the source…

It will be the fifth time the Chinese constitution has been amended since it came into force in 1982. Previous revisions include the replacement of “planned economy” with “socialist market economy” to describe the country’s economic system in 1993.

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