By Stéphanie Balme, Michael W. Dowdle (eds.)
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Extra info for Building Constitutionalism in China
Certainly, my analyses may need to be strengthened and further research is required. Nevertheless, written in Chinese for Chinese legal professionals and Chinese scholars, my book was never intended to address the political and ideological concerns of foreign readers. From this point of view, Professor Upham’s (and others’) frustration and dissatisfaction with my book is understandable. On the other hand, however, their objections are also the products of certain kinds of analytic errors (mostly methodological) that are typical of the efforts of Western “China watchers” to understand China’s constitutional system.
Yuan’s former vice president, Li Yuanhong, was made the new President in 1916. Beyond this, the Progressives and the Nationalists could only agree on the restoration of the Provisional Constitution of 1912 and the reconvening of the parliament that had been elected on April 1913. Those two parliamentary houses, whose three-year mandate had actually expired, convened on August 1, 1916. Duan Qirui, a chief of the Northern Beiyang faction, was appointed prime minister. From August 1916 to June 1917, the parliament resumed drafting a new constitution on the basis of the Provisional Constitution of 1912 and the Tiantan Draft Constitution of 1913.
The CCP found a way to modernize the country in the absence of a preexisting modern administrative state or a modern Constitution. Today, China’s inherited political and constitutional institutions may not be as effective as we would like them to be, or as they are in some other countries, but the real question is whether abolishing the CCP would make China better off and help it develop faster in the future. Put differently, without the CCP, can China continue to develop in the way that it has?