Jiang Zemin appeared at a political leadership ceremony on Sunday, quelling rumors that the aging former president was near death, the Financial Times reported. Jiang appeared with current President Hu Jintao and Premier Wen Jiabao at a ceremony in Beijing commemorating the fall of the Qing Dynasty in 1911. Jiang did not attend the 90th anniversary celebration of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) in July, leading many in the Hong Kong media to speculate that he was mortally ill – a rumor denied by China’s state media. However, his apparent health raises questions of what if any influence he might have on China’s 2012 leadership transition. While Jiang left office in 2002, he is widely seen as retaining clout within the CCP and possibly helping to promote members with a pro-market reform bent.