China: Democrat claims he was forced out of election

A few pieces to the story of Shandong University professor Sun Wenguang, who spent years incarcerated and subject to various forms of political persecution during and after the Cultural Revolution—who, as National People's Congress representative elections are now underway all across the country is, along with several colleagues, and without naming names, calling foul on the election held at the Shandong University campus this past week with charges of voter coercion and vote manipulation at the same time demanding a re-vote—have popped up online over the past few days. Some pieces, however, have mysteriously been disappeared.

Sun's grievances have been posted around, and the anonymous Dongsheng Hall blogger was one of several to pick up the story, here with Sun's letter to Beijing:

济南历城区人大代表当选代表榜: 樊丽明,马广海,马新
Candidates for National People's Congress representative of Lixia district in Jinan: Fan Liming, Ma Guanghai, Ma Xin


To the standing committee of the National People's Congress,

In the process of holding NPC representative district elections at Shandong University, violations of the law have occurred, and include:


1) Many students and retired professors have not been included in the nomination process, and their candidates have been deprived of the right to be nominated.
2) During this election, many voters’ right of access to information has not been respected. Of the four “proper candidates”, many voters don't know or understand them. The majority of voters were not privy to information regarding the process of the election right up until two days before it began, and many voters still don't know which day they are to vote, or how.
3) Article 38 of Election Law: “absentee voters, with the voting committee's permission, can entrust in writing other voters to cast on their behalf.” But a lot of people at Shandong U, without the voting committee's permission, without anything entrusted in writing, cast votes on behalf of other people; this act violates the Election Law.
4) Article 29 of Election Law: there are three ways by which candidates may be nominated: from the Party, from social groups (including student unions, the labor union, etc.), and petitions of more than ten people. But the Shandong University election did not respect these three rights of nomination that voters possess. Of Shandong U's list of 167 candidates, which included the aforementioned four “proper candidates”, not one of them followed these three legal requirements to be put on the list. Shandong U's approach to voter nomination has not followed the Election Law.
5) The majority of just-turned-18 and thus eligible voters were not put on the voting list, not allowed to vote or take part in the election.
6) Article 36 of Election Law: “the choosing of representatives will always be through anonymous voting,” to ensure voting confidentiality. But the voting method now being used at Shandong University is to gather the students in a clearing, make them stand squeezed together, with people on all sides of everyone, supervisors and the school Party Secretary standing nearby, have the students write their votes, with everyone around them able to see…what kind of anonymous voting is this? And how does this maintain voting confidentiality? Staff at some schools actually stand next to the polling box to collect the ballots, looking them over, and taking some of them out.

姓名 电话 手机 学院
孙文广 88365021 13655317356 山东大学管理学院退休教授
郭天旭 88376329 15054136795 山东大学法学院学生
贾昊 13791124769 山东大学法学院学生
高根 15964006607 山东大学法学院学生

We hope the standing committee of the National People's Congress will investigate this election at Shandong University. The election hasn't been public, hasn't been just, hasn't been transparent, hasn't been held in accordance with the law, and ought to be negated.
Details of the above situation will be enclosed by us presently.

Below are those signed:

Tuesday, November 13, 2007, Shandong University

Sun Wenguang, professor, retired, Shandong University School of Management, 88365021 13655317356
Guo Tianxu, Shandong University School of Law, 88376329 15054136795
Jia Hao, Shandong University School of Law, 13791124769
Gao Gen, Shandong University School of Law, 15964006607

An earlier posting of the letter can be found at Aboluowang, along with a photo from Shandong University showing the crowded student voters mentioned above:

From there, the open letter has founds its way into all sorts of blogging spaces.

Also from the Dongsheng Hall blogger is the text of a flyer dated Nov. 8 being distributed around the Shandong University campus, along with a photo of Sun apparently campaigning on a city bus:

[‘This is the only place they'll let me speak!’]


During the process of an election in a modern country ruled by law, public powers (which includes the judicial and administrative branches) must ensure fairness and justice, and cannot bias election towards one specific side, or one specific Party. But during the district election held at Shandong University, Shandong University's public powers have clearly been unfair and unjust.

(一) 在提名阶段


1. The Nomination Stage
Staff in several departments, those on the state payroll, have used their office time and office telephones to introduce some designated candidates, among whom many of which went on to become the “proper candidates”, with myself, prior to this, having on multiple occasions, clearly told the university leaders of my intention (once in the presence of office staff) to run. So why would they not tell this to the teaching staff while they were on the phone?

Certain public servants at Shandong University have been using office time to rally votes for designated candidates, possibly without the candidates’ knowledge; so who is it that has given these public servants such instructions?

10月19日到 10月23日期间,我在南院宿舍贴出竞选海报,全部被撕被盖,我白天贴,他们黑夜里盖,由于大家的抗议, 24日起南院撕盖竞选海报活动突然停止。有人怀疑这是公权力所为。

11月5日我到山大老校三宿舍、五宿舍张贴了选举海报共八张, 11月6日上午被全部撕盖,在这之前,有人看到是公安便衣干的。

2. The Campaign Stage
From October 19 to 23, I had posters up at the dormitories in the south campus, all of with were torn down or covered over. I'd put them up in the day and by night they'd be gone; as a result of everyone's protestations, the ripping down and covering up of campaign posters at the south campus suddenly stopped. Some suspect the ‘public powers’ of this.

On November 5 I went to dormitories 3 and 5 at the old campus, and put up a total of eight campaign posters. By the morning of Nov. 6 they were all either torn down or covered up; prior to that, someone had seen plainclothes PSB doing this.

(三)11月6日,有些院系召开学生班长副班长会议,会上传达了对竞选人孙,文.广的对策、指示,让他们转告学生,”不要听孙,文.广的演说”, 11月7日某学院召开党员紧急会议,通告说,有的独立候选人受海外势力支持,要竞选,让同学不要去听,去听的,见到了要拉回来。不能投独立候选人的票,谁投了他的票,我们是能查出来的,查出来后要查处该生和直接负责人。


3. On November 6, some departments organized class monitors and deputy class monitors together for a meeting, during which plans and instructions aimed at candidate Sun Wenguang were given, and they were made to passed on to other students: “do not listen to Sun Wenguang's speeches.” On November 7, certain departments held an emergency meeting for Party members, the notice for which read, ‘some independent candidates have received support from overseas powers, and want to campaign; stop your classmates from listening [to them]. Those who go listen, if seen, will be brought back. No votes are allowed for independent candidates; anyone who votes for them will be found out; students who are found out and those directly responsible for them will be investigated.’

I firmly object to the unfairness of Shandong University's public powers.



4. On Nov. 4, I went to the front of the old campus’ cafeteria, to meet voters and display my campaign platform billboard (which hung with rope), and the guy from the Shandong U police station came out and said: do you have permission to hang banners? I said: no. He said: if you don't have a permit you're not allowed to hang it. Him and I began arguing, and then I said to him: I want to talk to your station chief. We went into the office, he dialed a number and put me through; in the end we came to an agreement. I took the billboard down off the rope and placed it on the ground.

Nov. 6, I went to the old campus’ cafeteria to display my platform billboard again, and again the police station guy came over, picked up my billboard and was prepared to take it away. I protested, and he made me go to the office. In a loud voice, I asked: “DO YOU HAVE A SUBPOENA?” He said “no.” So then I asked: do you have a warrant? License to detain me? He said “no.” I said: since you have no legal documentation, why do you want me to go into the police station office? By this time many students had gathered around. They could see things didn't look right, and left.



2007年11月 8日(此稿已经在校园内散发)

The various facts prove that this election, at Shandong University, has not been just for me.

From Shandong University,

Sun Wenguang

November 8, 2007 (this text has already been spread around campus)

Zhang Weiguo of the blogspot-hosted New Century Net blog has a picture of professor Sun in his blog post looking at the reality of Sun's situation, past interviews the professor has given, the accusation mentioned above that Sun has received support from overseas anti-China forces—which Sun attributes to overseas Chinese political groups‘ reports on his situation—and cases similar to his from recent history:

MSN Live Spaces blogger Cha Pi provides some further background, and the Free More News blog blogs a short Sun biography which includes the details of his incarceration history from 1960-1981.

Equally interesting is the Sina blogger ‘Old Horses Know The Road’, who appears to be an employee at Shandong University, and her post whose title borrows the old Mao edict, ‘A single spark can start a prairie fire':




Two days ago I was still saying that the elections here were going smoothly, but then yesterday I noticed that they're not going smoothly at all, that only someone as slow as me could've not seen it.
Yesterday afternoon one colleague gave me a piece of paper, just the size of a business card. If you didn't look closely, you might think it was one of those flyers you see everywhere.
One side of the paper had this written:
A 73 year-old retired Shandong U professor has a dream:
My dream is to run and become a People's Congress representative, and for me to be elected would set a new national record. This would be both my honor, and the honor of the the electorate at Shandong University, the honor of Shandong University, and the honor of the CPC. I've been at Shandong U for fifty years. I love Shandong U. I want to bring prestige to Shandong U, and now it's only the voters of Shandong U who can help me fulfill this dream. The voters are my gods.
On the other side were a few lines:
Sun Wenguang: 73 year-old retired Shandong U professor, past member of the CPPCC for ten years.
On the ballot will be “alternatives”. I want to come from the electorate, to represent the electorate, and be responsible to the electorate, not to be a slave to the powers. When you vote, don't for get to draw an “〇”!
(also on the back were his home phone and cellphone numbers)
They say he's put out more than a few of these “campaign” notices, that he was pushing them onto everyone he sees, hoping that the world would cast their votes for him. Of course, he didn't get elected.
They also say that the university admin had a special meeting, and implied something or other.

Whatever the case, this amounts to a really small spark. We also would like to see those representatives who “really” got “elected” demonstrate to us voters their desire to be representatives.

To say more would be a mistake, so that's all I'll say.

2007-11-14 00:38:44
Yes, they definitely had a meeting. I have a classmate who took part in it; they wanted to choose two [candidates] out of four, and this professor wasn't one of them…there were definitely some hints dropped, or else they were just told.

[匿名] boston
2007-11-14 08:24:58
This old gentleman is very admirable! Though, running single-handed makes it hard to accomplish anything.

[匿名] 栗
2007-11-14 08:34:36
They're saying the provincial government elections got completely out of hand, that governor Jiang Daming went down to the scene, and that in the end the provincial bigwig left pissed off.

[匿名] nail
2007-11-14 11:08:14
Back in first or second year there was an election right in the middle of exam week. One teacher just came right into the classroom and made us fill out the ballots, told us a few names, we didn't know who they were, so I just abstained, since I didn't know anything about these candidates, couldn't have made use of my rights if I'd wanted to, so I could only just abstain.

[匿名] 郁闷
2007-11-14 21:49:52
He's been completely screwed.
When our office voted, the director of the political department and the office head gave us directions, and we had to vote on the spot, “an ‘x’ for the first one, and circles for the other two,” or “an ‘x’ for the middle [candidate], circles for numbers 1 and 3.” Because #3 was the dean of our school. Makes me want to pass out and die.

[匿名] 过客
2007-11-14 22:18:03
Professor Sun gave a speech in front of the cafeteria…lots of people went to see it…of course lots of us went to vote when the time came, but he didn't stand a chance…


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