Kankyo Shimbun, a famous newspaper in the field of environmental issues, carried an article on my political campaign party which was held in Tokyo on August 4. I have had a close relationship with this newspaper company since the time when I served as Minister of the Environment from October 2018 to September 2019. Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Taro Aso, Minister of Defense Taro Kono, and Minister of the Environment Shinjiro Koizumi kindly took part in my party as special guests to support my political campaign.
Thanks to Minister of the Environment Koizumi’s speech, the party livened up. I competed with his father, Mr. Junichiro Koizumi, Former Prime Minister, in the election of members of the House of Representatives in Yokosuka City, Kanagawa Prefecture, several times from the late 1980s to the early 1990s. (At that time, a medium electoral district system allowed plural candidates from the same political party.) Mr. Shinjiro Koizumi, the son of my former rival in the election, is now my successor as the Minister of the Environment. It really is a curious fate. In his speech, Minister Koizumi did not forget to respect me as his senior in the environmental administration.
The Kankyo Shimbun’s article highly evaluated the best efforts that I made to suspend China’s President Xi Jinping’s visit to Japan as a state guest and my familiarity with young Ministers like Mr. Koizumi and Mr. Kono who are expected to become excellent political leaders in the next generation. Mr. Katsuya Komine, executive director of the Kankyo Shimbun, knows me well. I owe him for understanding and writing about my political thoughts and actions. It reminds me of an old saying, “Friends are the most valuable assets.”