This study of competitive elections in a northern China village identifies two contradictions: one between villagers and village officials, the other between village elite and those seeking power. The one between villagers and the old leadership in the village focuses on the latter's corruption and bad governance, which had led to serious erosion and unfair distribution of the collective property. The one between villagers and the new leadership lies in the latter's failure to address the problems left by the old leadership. Both led to popular discontent and fuelled political participation. The contradiction between elite members focuses on competing for political office, which has resulted in the formation of factions and factionalism in both election and post-election politics and has become a salient feature of the village politics. The investigation of this village with governing problems found that free elections have brought about a radical redistribution of political power, but little satisfaction to villagers because their deep-seated desire for a fair redistribution of the collective property remains unfulfilled.