Chinese president Xi Jinping can be happy with himself. After approving changes enabling him (and future presidents) to stay in office for as long as he’d like without any term limits, China’s rubber-stamp parliament appointed him for a second term on Saturday. Of course, it did so unanimously: all 2,970 members voted for him.
Wang Qishan, who is Jinping’s close ally, was appointed his official deputy. Wang received 2,969 votes in favor and only one against.
Xi’s confirmation marks the end of China’s slow democratization process. The country goes back to the system it has known for, well, forever: One strong man at the top, supported by a vast bureaucracy. This may not be the future we Westerners had in mind for China, but it certainly does seem to be what the Chinese want. There are no mass protests or large-scale resistance movements.