Trump arrives in Japan to kick off 4-day state visit

Trump arrives in Japan to kick off 4-day state visit
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President TrumpDonald John Trump2020 Democrats spar over socialism ahead of first debate Senate passes .5 billion border bill, setting up fight with House 'Teflon Don' avoids the scorn of the 'family values' GOP — again MORE arrived in Tokyo on Saturday for his weekend trip to be the first state guest of Japan since the enthronement of its new emperor.

Trump's plane landed just before 5 p.m. local time at the Haneda Airport, with the president and first lady Melania TrumpMelania TrumpMika Brzezinski to Ivanka and Melania: 'You will go down in history as having done nothing about' conditions for migrant children The Hill's Morning Report - Democratic debates: Miami nice or spice? In Arizona, Trump's new press secretary battled reporters MORE greeted by multiple U.S. and Japanese officials on the tarmac, according to White House pool reports.

Japanese Foreign Affairs Minister Taro Kono and his wife, Kaori; U.S. Ambassador to Japan William Hagerty; Commander of U.S. Forces Japan Lt. Gen. Kevin Schneider; and other Japanese diplomatic officials were on hand for the arrival.


The president then headed to a reception with more than two dozen Japanese business leaders at the U.S. ambassador's residence. Acting White House chief of staff Mick MulvaneyJohn (Mick) Michael MulvaneyThe Hill's Morning Report - Democratic debates: Miami nice or spice? On The Money: Sanders unveils plan to wipe .6T in student debt | How Sanders plan plays in rivalry with Warren | Treasury watchdog to probe delay of Harriet Tubman bills | Trump says Fed 'blew it' on rate decision The Hill's 12:30 Report: Trump targets Iran with new sanctions MORE and U.S. Trade Representative Robert LighthizerRobert (Bob) Emmet LighthizerChinese, US negotiators fine-tuning details of trade agreement: report The Trump economy keeps roaring ahead Trump says no discussion of extending deadline in Chinese trade talks MORE were expected to be among those at the gathering Saturday evening.

"We walk off the plane and here we are along with probably 40 of the greatest business leaders in the world," Trump quipped during a short speech at the reception. "You really have some people who have just been incredible, incredible investors in our country."

Trump emphasized the economic bond between the U.S. and Japan, saying the relationship "has never been stronger" or "more powerful." However, he also argued that trade will be "a little bit more fair" after a bilateral deal is sealed.

"Japan has had a substantial edge for many, many years, but that’s OK. Maybe that’s why you like us so much," he said.

Trump is slated to play golf on Sunday morning with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe before attending a sumo tournament, a major part of Japanese culture. There, Trump is expected to offer a branded trophy to the champion. A senior White House official said Saturday that the trophy measures roughly 54 inches tall and weighs at least 60 pounds, calling it the "President's Cup."

The overseas trip, which falls over the Memorial Day weekend, gives Trump an opportunity to cast aside partisan wars in Washington for a few days. The visit will include a number of ceremonial moments, with less focus on substantive policy discussions, though trade and North Korea are expected to come up during a bilateral meeting.