Taipei hails rise of a critic of Beijing; mainland will be wary Beijing can expect more friction with the US on trade and human rights after an ardent critic spearheaded the Democrats to victory, analysts say. But while Nancy Pelosi, 66, the next House Speaker, has a history of China-bashing, the hard-charging California Democrat cannot derail Sino-US relations built on the mutual interests, they say. The Democrats' resurgence and Ms Pelosi rise have raised fears of renewed US concern over human rights, mainland China's massive trade surplus and its widespread abuse of intellectual property rights, America watcher Jin Canrong said. 'Ms Pelosi has a great bias against China and her rising to the leadership of the House could affect US policies towards China,' said Professor Jin, vice-dean of Renmin University's School of International Relations. Xia Yishan, a senior research fellow at the China Institute of International Studies, said: 'We can foresee a greater emphasis on trade policy and human rights as the Democrats are more protectionist and Ms Pelosi is known for her ardent criticism of China's human rights record.' He said the Democrats would have every electoral incentive to pander to the protectionist domestic sentiment. Over the years, Ms Pelosi has been a constant vocal critic of the mainland. In 1991, she unfurled a banner in Tiananmen Square that read 'To those who died for democracy in China', which Beijing denounced as a 'premeditated farce'. She opposed awarding the mainland normal trading relations throughout the 1990s and Beijing's bid for the 2008 Olympics. She also has protested against visiting mainland leaders, and demanded that Beijing release all political prisoners. Ms Pelosi is expected to raise the volume on her pet subject. But Professor Jin and Mr Xia said Sino-US relations could no longer be unsettled by one person or a single issue. Professor Jin said that as the House was not as influential as the Senate in foreign affairs, Ms Pelosi and the Democrats' sway over Sino-US relations were limited. But the split of a Republican White House and a Democrat Congress would tie President George W.Bush's hands in dealing with Beijing. The mainland media has shown little interest in the US congressional elections, though several reports yesterday singled out Ms Pelosi as a possible source of 'noise' in Sino-US ties. The People's Daily, the mouthpiece of the Communist Party, ran a small story on an international page. The China Daily, an official English-language newspaper, published a front-page story on her rise to the position of Speaker. Shanghai's Dongfang Daily quoted academics saying that Ms Pelosi was biased against the mainland and that she could adopt a tougher stance on issues such as human rights and the ballooning US-China trade deficit. The Shanghai Morning Post described her as 'very prejudiced' against Beijing. In contrast, Taiwan is upbeat over the result of the midterm elections, especially Ms Pelosi's victory. 'We feel happy about her being elected and offer her our heartfelt congratulations,' Foreign Ministry spokesman David Wang Chien-yeh said. 'She has attached great importance in human rights and democracy while in Congress. This is in line with what Taiwan has been promoting. Based on our shared beliefs and values, there should be room for co-operation between our two sides.' Ms Pelosi visited Taipei in 1999. 'It is a favourable development to Taiwan that she will be Speaker, given her long-term friendship with Taiwan,' said David Lee Ta-wei, the island's chief envoy to the US in the absence of formal ties. But Edward Chen I-hsin, professor of American studies at Taiwan's Tamkang University, pointed out that although Ms Pelosi was friendly to Taiwan, it did not necessarily mean she was equally friendly to scandal-plagued President Chen Shui-bian. Professor Chen said Ms Pelosi was not expected to be as anxious as her Republican colleagues over the long-delayed arms package the US has agreed to sell to Taiwan.