CHINA TOPIX

Updated 2:12 PM EST, Wed, Jan 29, 2020

Make CT Your Homepage

Election Process is Much Harder in China than in US, Says Chinese Envoy

Chinese ambassador to the U.S. Cui Tiankai at a joint interview with Chinese and foreign media at the second China-U.S. Consultations on Asia-Pacific Affairs, October 10, 2011.

(Photo : Embassy of the PRC in the USA [china-embassy.org]) Chinese ambassador to the U.S. Cui Tiankai at a joint interview with Chinese and foreign media at the second China-U.S. Consultations on Asia-Pacific Affairs, October 10, 2011.

China's election process is a stark contrast to the United States. It requires hard work starting at the bottom and then working all the way to the top, said Chinese ambassador to the U.S. Cui Tiankai on Wednesday.

The Chinese take longer to cotton to politicians, Cui said, underscoring the notion that political careers in China are typically born at the grassroots level.

Like Us on Facebook

He said that unlike in the West, churning out a national figure overnight would be "impossible." The process is longer and more demanding, Cui added, noting the vast amount of mediums available to American politicians such as media and super PACs.

President Xi Jinping's rise to power wasn't easy. He spent years serving one of the country's poorest areas and gradually worked his way up. With each step upward, he worked to win the support of the people and convince them of his capabilities.

Only then can a politician take another step up, Cui said.

The ambassador also talked about the problem of double standard in rule of law.

In order to have an effective rule of law, the laws of China must be respected. But if people are given the notion that the law can be disregarded if the U.S., for instance, harbors a special interest in a certain individual, then that would undermine the rule and raise concern on human rights in China, he added.

The envoy's remarks are a rare public critique of Washington's electoral system that reflects Beijing transition into an emerging world power.

The steady growth of China is expected to shift the balance of power and illustrate itself more fully in the upcoming summit between Xi and President Barack Obama.

Both leaders are looking to discuss a range of global and regional issues including the improvement of U.S.-China ties, the Islamic State and counterterrorism, Ebola, and climate change, Cui said.

It is also possible that the two would tackle Iran's nuclear program, the denuclearization of North Korea and a possible strengthening of military relations, he added.

Real Time Analytics