march 2012

From [“Pro-Leung polls put Beijing in corner” (SCMP)]:

“Polls showing that chief executive candidate Leung Chun-ying is building a substantial lead in popularity over Henry Tang Ying-yen – the rival that Beijing favours – will make it increasingly difficult for the central government to back Tang openly, observers said yesterday.”

“Lau said that, as tensions flared, Beijing could become concerned. ’[Resorting to] smear campaigns is the last thing Beijing wants to see. The objective is to create an atmosphere to make Hong Kong people feel like this is a genuine competition without damaging the harmony,’ he said.”

“It will be more difficult for Beijing to give him the full support if his popularity is too low. It is unlikely the central government will go along with an unpopular candidate. That will make his governance very difficult and will do no good to the central government’s image.”

“For the first time, the chief executive race seems to be more than a formality. Although the majority of the population has no say in who wins, the competition is getting more fierce and closer to how a real election looks.”

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