Xi Jinping is awarded a place in history, and the Politburo Standing Committee, the seven most powerful men in China, are without an immediate successor to the man at the top. The results of the Nineteenth Congress of the Chinese Communist Party are inviting new speculation and reflections on the future of the country rather than dispelling them. The leader, Xi, arrived at the Congress secure in the strength of his domestic and international popularity, and intending to underscore his position.
He did so, however, by stressing the supreme importance of the Party over everything else, a Party that Xi managed to lead out of a dangerous situation that had developed in recent years. It was a Chinese Communist Party that appeared distant and alien to the Chinese population, because of the many scandals, the impunity that many officials seemed to enjoy, the abuses of power and the obtuseness demonstrated in managing certain social situations.
Of course, we cannot speak of a “crisis of representation,” as we are used to in the West, in a country ruled by a single party, but the symptoms of a crisis of legitimacy and of the loss of popular confidence toward a party that appeared increasingly detached from real life were becoming too risky for the “maintenance of stability” and for ensuring the realization of the “Chinese dream.”