Remarks by the First Lady at a Japan State Dinner Press Preview

April 09, 2024

[As prepared for delivery.]

Good evening. Welcome to our State Dinner preview.

Tomorrow, we find the common threads of humanity that connect us, that transcend distance or difference, built on shared values as we celebrate the flourishing friendship between the United States and Japan – and those threads that bind us, people to people, heart to heart.

As technology dissolves the distances between us, and we face challenges that cross borders and oceans, our nations are partners in building a world where we choose creation over destruction, peace over bloodshed, and democracy over autocracy.

President Biden and I are honored to welcome Prime Minister and Mrs. Kishida to the United States for an Official Visit with a State Dinner tomorrow night. We look forward to returning the hospitality and friendship we have experienced in our travels to Japan.

For dinner, the State Floor will transform into a vibrant spring garden – a place of joy and renewal, of hope and growth.

As guests sit among a field of flowers, glass and silk butterflies from both our countries will dance over their tables.

Their graceful flight a reminder that as our nations navigate the winds of change, we do so together – as partners in peace and prosperity.

As dinner comes to an end, guests will enter a Cross Hall overflowing with the purples and pinks and blues of hydrangeas – native to both our nations – some as high as six feet tall.

Beneath their feet, a stunning floor covering transforms the hall into a river of spring blossoms. Swimming through the water are koi – symbols of friendship, peace, luck, and perseverance.

Every detail of tomorrow's State Dinner has been thoughtfully planned by an incredible team of people from across our government – Joe and I are so fortunate to have you.

Thank you to all those who make this house a home and have come together to make tomorrow night incredibly meaningful and memorable. And, I am once again grateful for Bryan Rafanelli's brilliance and partnership.

Before you leave today, we will share a little taste of the meal our incredible chefs are preparing for the guests.

Now, please welcome, our Social Secretary, Carlos Elizondo.

Jill Biden, Remarks by the First Lady at a Japan State Dinner Press Preview Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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