Weekend in politics: Obama meets with Japanese PM, first lady on Fallon, and more

Phil Pruitt
The Ticket

President Barack Obama meets Friday at the White House with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

Abe’s focus on stronger relations with Washington has assumed more importance as Japan has tangled with China over the control of unoccupied islands in the seas between the two countries, the Associated Press reports.

Abe, who arrived Thursday afternoon and will leave early Saturday, won a convincing election victory in December for a second stint as prime minister after resigning in 2007 for health reasons. He is the fifth Japanese prime minister since Obama took office.

President Obama and Vice President Joe Biden will attend the Democratic Governors Association Winter Meeting on Friday. The Democratic governors are in town for the National Governors Association Winter meeting, which runs Friday through Monday. All of the governors—Democrats and Republicans—are invited to a White House reception Sunday evening.

Also worth noting this weekend: Mike Huckabee, winner of the 2008 Iowa Caucus, will speak Saturday at the Republican Party of Iowa “Celebrate Life” event, and Secretary of State John Kerry on Sunday begins his first overseas trip as the nation’s top diplomat with a stop in the UK.

And then there is this: First lady Michelle Obama makes her first sit-down appearance Friday on “Late Night With Jimmy Fallon” to kick off a national tour celebrating the third anniversary of her childhood obesity program, “Let's Move!” The first lady appeared on the show in a taped comedy sketch for the second anniversary and faced off with Fallon in a fitness challenge.

And this: The Sunday talk shows are likely to focus on one word: sequester. The automatic spending cuts are scheduled to kick in March 1.

Sources: Yahoo News’ The Ticket, Associated Press and Reuters.