The purges of former Politburo Standing Committee member Zhou Yongkang, former Central Military Commission Vice Chairman Xu Caihou, and the former head of the Central Committee Office Ling Jihua in 2014 re-excited a long-standing debate in the field of elite Chinese politics: how contentious is politics at the elite level? On the face of it, these purges, as well as the arrests of ninety nine senior officials associated with these three individuals and with other cases, seem to prove that elite politics remains highly contentious at the top (People's Daily 2015). This outcome was surprising considering that decades of institution building had taken place after the Cultural Revolution. However, proponents of institutionalized politics in the CCP argue that the leadership had a genuine desire to clean house, and that these arrests, even if politically motivated, instilled a renewed discipline in the party. Once the “bad apples” were eliminated, the leadership under Xi Jinping would have continued on the road of institutionalization (Li 2014). Cadre promotion institutions, regular meetings of the Politburo and its standing committee, party congresses, and retirement rules remain largely unaffected by the purges and will continue to ensure relatively harmonious decision making and predictable successions in the foreseeable future.