Sen. Ben Sasse (R-Neb.) on Dec. 28 strongly criticized Chinese leader Xi Jinping after the communist leader was granted a new title of “people’s leader,” which echos the notorious dictator Mao Zedong.

The Wall Street Journal on the same day reported that the Politburo of the Chinese Communist Party had labeled Xi as “renmin lingxiu” or “people’s leader” after a two-day meeting. Responding to the move, Sasse, who is a member of Senate Intelligence Committee, released a short and harsh statement on his website.

“If Chairman Xi is the ‘people’s leader,’ who are the people?” Sasse began his public message to Beijing.

“When Chairman Xi talks about ‘the people,’ he doesn’t mean the Uyghurs in torture camps. When Chairman Xi talks about ‘the people,’ he doesn’t mean the Falun Gong prisoners whose organs are harvested. When Chairman Xi talks about ‘the people,’ he doesn’t mean the baby girls who were left to die under China’s one-child policy.”

Sasse stated, “When Chairman Xi talks about ‘the people,’ he means what every communist hack before him has meant: not the people but the Communist Party.”

The senator’s statement pointed out that the title of “people’s leader” was previously reserved for Mao Zedong, founder of the Communist Party, who is responsible for tens of millions deaths during his nearly three decade rule.

Xi can also be a leader for life as Mao did, after an amendment to the Chinese Constitution in 2018, which abolished the two-consecutive-term limit for China’s presidency. In 2017, Xi was appraised to the same level of Mao when the Communist Party included his thoughts into its constitution.

This December statement is not the first time that Sasse expressed a strong stance over China. Earlier, he slammed Michael Bloomberg after the Democratic presidential candidate said that Xi is “not a dictator.”

“This is the kind of stupid you can’t script,” the senator said in a statement. He added, “The Chinese Communist Party has thrown a million innocent Uighurs into camps and has made billions of dollars by literally harvesting the organs of their political prisoners.”

“That’s an evil dictatorship and Michael Bloomberg can’t hide from that reality.”

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