BEIJING (AP) — Trying disgraced politician Bo Xilai's wife for murder was the easy part in cleaning up the political mess the couple has created for China's communist party. Now comes the tough bit: punishing Bo for abuse of power without further tarnishing the party's reputation.
Disciplining him quietly will save the party the embarrassment of washing its dirty linen in public but reinforce public perception that it goes soft on one of its own. Analysts say the leadership is therefore more likely to bite the bullet and try Bo in public.
Time is growing tight for an announcement, since the party may want to deal with the matter ahead of a national congress this fall that will usher in a once-in-a-decade transfer of power to new leaders.