The new helmsman: Xi Jinping’s re-election brings comparison with Mao
Presidents reappointment for unlimited terms in office sends the state propaganda machine into overdrive
China’s propaganda drive has kicked into overdrive following Xi Jinping’s unanimous reappointment as president at the weekend.
Xi’s face dominated the front pages of major Sunday newspapers, many carrying the same editorial from the ruling Communist party’s official People’s Daily about Xi’s reappointment as president on Saturday.
It used language once more associated with Mao Zedong, who was known as the Great Helmsman, saying he was a “leader loved and respected by the people” and “helmsman of the country”.
“The voyage of a great country cannot do without a helmsman,” the paper wrote.
There was never any doubt that the largely rubber-stamp parliament would not have re-elected Xi as president on Saturday, especially following a constitutional amendment a week earlier which lifts presidential term limits, meaning Xi can stay on indefinitely.