On Friday, March 10th, China’s political elite officially endorsed Xi Jinping for an unprecedented third term as the country’s President. This ceremonial vote, conducted in the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, solidifies his control and establishes him as the longest-serving head of state of Communist China since its founding in 1949. The vote was a highly orchestrated political theater designed to showcase the unity and legitimacy of the ruling elite. Xi received a unanimous 2,952 votes, followed by a standing ovation, reaffirming his position as the preeminent political figure in China.
Xi Jinping’s reappointment as the President of China, a largely ceremonial role in Chinese politics, was widely expected after he secured an unprecedented third term as the head of the Chinese Communist Party in October 2022. As China’s most authoritative leader in decades, Xi’s reappointment reinforces his position as the preeminent political figure in the country. Despite the presidency being symbolic, Xi’s power lies in his simultaneous roles as the head of the party and military. He was reaffirmed as the leader of both, the Communist Party congress in October.
In addition to Xi Jinping’s reappointment as President, the National People’s Congress (NPC) appointed other influential state leaders, including Zhao Leji as the head of the NPC and Han Zheng as the Vice President of China. The newly appointed leaders took a public oath of allegiance to the Chinese constitution in the Great Hall of the People. Furthermore, the NPC approved a comprehensive plan to reform institutions under the State Council, which includes creating a financial regulatory body, a national data bureau, and a restructuring of the science and technology ministry.