Politics Upstage China’s Annual Congress: Understanding the 2012 People’s Congress

This year’s carefully staged National People’s Congress (NPC) was overshadowed by events outside the conference hall. The public sacking of Chongqing Party Secretary Bo Xilai the day after the NPC ended, the increased scrutiny of Chinese “netizens” over the proceedings and growing talk of economic reform provided this year’s drama. Events inside the hall saw the reiteration of familiar themes, a limited legislative agenda and minimal oversight of the government.

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