The 20th Japanese Delegation of the US-Japan Young Political Leaders Exchange Program visited the United States from January 27 to February 9, 2007. Participants took part in a wide range of meetings, roundtables, and briefings in Washington DC, North Carolina, and California.
In Washington DC, the delegation met with Representative Michael M. Honda (D-CA) and Representative Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA), and they visited both the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and the Republican National Committee (RNC) to receive briefings on election campaign system, fundraising strategies, and regulations. The delegation also spoke with White House officials as well as experts from leading think tanks and nonprofit organizations. In addition, the group also met with East Asia specialists at the US State Department to discuss the state of US-Japan relations and exchange views on US-China relations.
In North Carolina, the delegation visited the Duke University hospital and met with several prominent doctors and administration officials to learn about the hospital’s unique missions and community involvement, as well as its Cord Blood Transplant Program. The participants also visited the Research Triangle Park (RTP) and received briefings on its goal of promoting university, industry and government collaborations that lead to the establishment and successful maintenance of research, scientific and technology-based facilities within the Triangle and North Carolina. In addition, the group also met with former and present members of the North Carolina General Assembly, the county District Attorney and the mayor of Wilmington to discuss local politics.
The delegation concluded its trip in California, where it visited Sacramento and San Francisco. The delegation spoke with State Senator Jim Battin, former Oklahoma State Senator Brooks Douglass, Sacramento Assemblyman Jarred Huffman, Palo Alto Mayor Yoriko Kishimoto, and county supervisors about the relationship between the federal, state, county and municipal governments. The delegation also visited industry lobbyists, and local businesses, as well as a local elementary school and a nonprofit organization focusing on the Asian American community.
AKIKO ENOMOTO, Staff Researcher, Policy Research Committee (DPJ)
TATSUO IGARASHI, Member, Tsukuba City Assembly (DPJ)
CHIKAKO IKEDA, Staff, Election Bureau, LDP Headquarters
MITSUYOSHI MIZOGUCHI, Acting Assistant Chief, Integrated Center Secretariat, New Komeito Headquarters
HIDEAKI OCHIAI, Acting Assistant Chief, Shikoku Branch Office, The Komei Shimbun (Party organ paper)
TAKAAKI WANI, Staff, Diet Affairs Committee, LDP Headquarters
HIDEKAZU TAKEDA, Japan Foundation, Center for Global Partnership [OBSERVER]