Central Committee was the common designation of a standing administrative body of communist parties, analogous to a board of directors, whether ruling or non-ruling in the 20th century and of the surviving states in the early 21st century. In such party organizations the committee would typically be made up of delegates elected at a party congress. In those states where it constituted the state power, the Central Committee made decisions for the party between congresses, and usually was responsible for electing the Politburo. In non-ruling Communist parties, the Central Committee is usually understood by the party membership to be the ultimate decision-making authority between Congresses once the process of democratic centralism has led to an agreed-upon position.
Non-Communist organizations also have Central Committees, such as the Mennonite Church and Alcoholics Anonymous, as well as the Central Committee for Conscientious Objectors (to war). In the United States the Democratic and the Republican Parties both have Central Committees; these act as the leading body of those organizations at the national/administrative level, as well as local committees in a similar capacity within the local Democratic or Republican governments of individual counties and states.
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