The sons also rise: Xi Jinping grooms more and more princelings for top slots

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By Willy Lam,

Given the apparent ease with which President Xi Jinping has consolidated his hold on power, it is perhaps not surprising that the princeling (a reference to the offspring of party elders) is actively nurturing the careers of younger members of the “red aristocracy.”

Deng Xiaoping gets a kiss from Deng Zhuodi in this 1986 file photo.  /Xinhua
Deng Xiaoping gets a kiss from Deng Zhuodi in this 1986 file photo. /Xinhua

In the past year, several sons of former Chinese Communist Party (CCP) Politburo members have been appointed to mid-ranking positions mostly in the provinces.

Given that most of these young turks are in their late 20s to early 40s, it is possible that these “cadres with revolutionary bloodline” can enter the ranks of ministerial- or even Politburo-level officials in the coming decade or two.

The most eye-catching of the junior princelings is undoubtedly Deng Zhuodi, the only grandson of late patriarch and “Chief Architect of Reform” Deng Xiaoping, who passed away in 1997.

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