China’s parliament on Sunday overwhelmingly voted in favor of passing a historic change to the country’s constitution, lifting presidential term limits to allow President Xi Jinping to rule indefinitely. The measure saw little opposition in the National People’s Congress, with only two delegates voting against it and three abstaining. The 64-year-old Xi, who previously said the constitutional amendment would reflect “the common will of the party and the people,” now appears to be on track to remain in power indefinitely after centralizing power in recent years. In addition to lifting presidential term limits, the amendment also adds Xi’s personal political philosophy into the preamble of the constitution. The amendment effectively abolishes a system put in place in 1982 to prevent any lifelong dictatorships like that of Mao Zedong, to whom Xi is increasingly being compared.
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