politics

Agriculture vice minister in trouble for kissing married colleague

77 Comments

Yuko Nakagawa, a parliamentary vice minister at the Agriculture Ministry, has apologized for causing trouble after a weekly magazine reported that she had kissed a married colleague while on a business trip.

Nakagawa, 56, the widow of late former Finance Minister Shoichi Nakagawa, checked herself into a hospital when the scandal broke in Shukan Shincho on March 5. The magazine carried a story about her kissing lawmaker Hirofumi Kado, 49, on a street in Roppongi on Feb 23.

However, Nakagawa reappeared in public on Wednesday and tearfully told reporters she was sorry for the incident. She said the incident occurred after a drinking party and that her action was thoughtless, Sports Nippon reported. Nakagawa also added that she would not resign her post which she has held since last September.

Kado, who is married with three children, issued a public apology on March 5 after the Shukan Shincho issue hit the newsstands.

Earlier, Nakagawa apologized to her colleagues at a House of Representatives committee meeting in the Diet. She was welcomed with applause and people shouting, “Do your best," Sports Nippon reported.

Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga told reporters that he had instructed Nakagawa to properly carry out her duties and conduct herself appropriately.

The government is still reeling from the Feb 23 resignation of Nakagawa's boss, former Agriculture Minister Koya Nishikawa, amid questions over political fundraising. A government spokesman said, "We cannot allow a chain reaction of resignations to spread within the ministry. As long as Ms Nakagawa she says she wants to continue, we can only support her.”

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77 Comments
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Haha! She was dunk at the time, so that makes it alright in Japan.

However,mthe question is, did she kiss the married man? Or, did the married man kiss her? It takes two to tango and hopefully, Kato is getting as much of a public shaming as this woman is.

7 ( +13 / -6 )

“We cannot allow a chain reaction of resignations to spread within the ministry. As long as Ms Nakagawa she says she wants to continue, we can only support her.”

Classic! It's not, "If she can still do her job", it's "If she still says she wants it". In any case, I really don't see what the big fuss is about -- she's a widow. Now, Kado, on the other hand -- if he was into it then I can see him being in trouble (at home. It's not the media's business). Not worth the time being spent on it.

20 ( +24 / -4 )

The media could be quite evil. All because the want to sell, sell, sell.

6 ( +12 / -6 )

if hashimoto could still keep his job after admitting to an affair with a hostess, then she can surely keep her job.

17 ( +17 / -0 )

Her husband was the one who was drunk at that G7 meeting in Rome. I agree with smithinjapan - it's none of anyone's business what she does... she's a widow. But sadly, using alcohol as an excuse seems to be a typical excuse here in Japan. Amazingly they get away with it.

9 ( +11 / -2 )

Agriculture vice minister in trouble for kissing married colleague

what trouble? fertile love in barren land !

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Yet more tragic translation. "Ganbatte" might well mean "Do your best," but it's clearly the equivalent of "Good luck," here. Can anyone seriously imagine a native English speaker shouting "Do your best!"?

5 ( +6 / -1 )

It's pretty amazing that some people are wondering if she should resign or not for kissing a colleague, something that has nothing to do with her performance as a vice minister.

9 ( +10 / -1 )

Nakagawa, 56, the widow of late former Finance Minister Shoichi Nakagawa,

Nepotism anyone?

1 ( +5 / -4 )

Who cares. Has nothing to do with her job. Its no one's business but the direct people involved.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

It takes two to tango.....Hospitalization won't prevent cupids arrow hitting it's spot., after a skinful. Politicians and there public statements of attrition, do they really think that this endears or provokes empathy or forgiveness?.....

1 ( +1 / -0 )

She can kiss me anytime and I will not tell.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Busted!!

But that said, I don't see that she's done anything that would require her to resign.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

No photo of lawmaker/colleague Hirofumi Kado, 49,? .....Aafter a drinking party and thoughtless actions Yuko Nakagawa seems to take pride of place, .

Was Hirofumi Kado, 49 incapacitated through 'thoughtless inebriation'. Did Yuko Nakagawa drag him submissively via a head lock?.......

3 ( +3 / -0 )

I'm really glad to see how people have treated this. Yes, it was a mistake and not okay, but does that make her unable to continue her job? Absolutely not. I think people are gonna forget about this soon, and that's a good thing.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

too bad they are carrying her through the coals. this is probably more embarrassing for a woman. she should have used tinder.

her male counterparts should say nothing considering the robust soapland, snack, herukura industry here.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

This is lowering the bar quite a bit. In the US, it is said that the only way to lose reelection is if you're caught in bed with a dead girl or a live boy.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

She's 56??? She looks 36 in that photo.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

How ridiculous. It would be newsworthy if she had danced topless after too much tequila maybe.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

didn't know it was bad for a single person to get in some action. best be careful.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

I really can't imagine why this is anybody's business but the people involved.

9 ( +10 / -1 )

She has done nothing wrong and has nothing to be ashamed off! The married man, however, must come up and apologize to all for taking advantage of her drunken state. 

0 ( +2 / -2 )

If she is going to lose her job, it should be because of the terrible performance of the Agriculture Ministry, which has helped manage Japan into one of the worst food self-sufficiency rates in the world for a major country.

If anything, this is a civil matter and Kudo's wife could try to sue her if she thinks Nakagawa has ruined her marriage.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

The dancing law was releated. There are two more antique laws. Kissing in publoc, hugging in publice have been illegal since late 1940's. So, shincho weekly caught her, sorry but until the laws are repealed, politicians will be target of Japanese gossip magazines. She really looks younger and is a good looking lady. Usually males get caught. Maybe women now have equal opportunity on their love life? No sexual harrassment story. So maybe he is her lover?

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Hirofumi Kado https://www.jimin.jp/english/profile/members/120849.html

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Whether she is drunk or not she was fully aware of the situation! She wants the public to believe such lame excuse?? Oh come on!

-5 ( +1 / -5 )

Shukan Shinchou.... nasty, nasty rag. Nectar to all the racist oyajis and their sad little group of younger followers.

The Daily Mail on steroids....

3 ( +4 / -1 )

In this kind of apology, people always say they are sorry for "causing trouble." Did she really cause anyone trouble, except may be the wife of the married man?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Toshiko public kissing was re legalised in Japan in 1945 after the American occupation it is not illegal.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

What rot. This was not even a big sloppy kiss but an innocent little kiss. But who kisses whom and how and when is no one's business.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

" she had kissed a married colleague while on a business trip."

i wouldn't call a jaunt across town for a drinking party a "business trip".

Also, although there's a hint if you look carefully at the dates of the kissing and of Nishikawa's resignation and notice they are the same, this article fails to mention a relevant factor. Namely, that the drinking and smooching was taking place just a few hours after Nakagawa's boss resigned, so there was a question of whether proper crisis control was in place. Nakagawa said she was in touch with the office by phone so there was no problem. She has also denied any sexual affair with Kado.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

There are two more antique laws. Kissing in publoc, hugging in publice have been illegal since late 1940's.

Thanks again to Dougie.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

@AmericnL As I rfea]] 1948 ,not 1945. The same year dancong laws were created and Gen Mac aske then Japanese govt yp make it was illegal to have Japanese norther families sell their daughters to souther prostitute house. PM was Shidehara. Pan pans got arrested fort kissing or hugging, not prostitutinhg as prostitutions were legal. The time was when Gen Mac and his legal officer Kadis abd Shdehar cabinet created Japanese Constitution. Madam Torio was Kadis lover and they worked for Aricle 9 Not 1945.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

She can kiss ME ALL she wants! Still a CUTIE at 56! Wow !

6 ( +6 / -0 )

She is kinda hot for a 56 year old widow! I would not have an issue with her kissing me!!

6 ( +6 / -0 )

I disagree with most comments. She's a public official, ethically obligated to demonstrate good character. Her action was "workplace sexual harassment." I do like how she resigned. How nice would it be if all public officials who were caught doing something wrong would also quietly resign?

-7 ( +1 / -7 )

Agriculture vice minister in trouble for kissing married colleague

If the colleague wasn't married, would that make it ok?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

@Iowan "I do like how she resigned. How nice would it be if all public officials who were caught doing something wrong would also quietly resign? "

Come again? Unless there has been a new development in the last few hours, she hasn't resigned and, in fact, specifically said that she won't resign.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Agriculture vice minister in trouble for kissing married colleague

Oh say it isn't so! How dare humans express bonding emotions!!!!!!

What has the world become!?!

If she was only wearing a burka or was sitting in a convent!!!!!!! Hey wait a second, it takes two to tango, so what of the guy?????

Oh wait, he was also married!!!!!!!!

But, in this new ear of political correctness and Leftist/Orthodox religious fanaticism's war against women and their rights, the full blame for what happened must have been on the women's part and not on the mans!!!

Oh, how the politically correct left have lost their way!

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

@AmericanhonorMAR. 11, 2015 - 07:24PM JST Toshiko public kissing was re legalised in Japan in 1945 after the American occupation it is not illega^

There wqs no such law in 1945. 1948 3 laws were created.under Shidehara Govt. re legalised? Ne ver had such laws in Japan.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

She's a public official, ethically obligated to demonstrate good character.

No, she's supposed to do her job in an ethical manner. Kissing someone has no bearing on her ability to do her job, and therefore is not related to the ethics of her job.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Christopher Glen; 'If the colleague wasn't married, would that make it ok?'

Herein lies the scandal, without which Shukan Shincho would have nothing to sell.

Seems to me Nakagawa san hasn't caused the fuss, responsibility for that lies with the weekly rag. She owes an apology to Kado san's wife though. Kado san has no doubt had a new one torn out for him.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Her action was "workplace sexual harassment."

Really?, it could be the other way around, being drunk as she was, Kado could have been the one taking advantage of that, she's a cutie at 56...

2 ( +2 / -0 )

In this day and age, politicians are better be careful as they are closely scrutinized as never before.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Personally I think she has the right to kiss and be kissed (by) anyone she likes and it's no one's business to interfere or try to make a tabloid scandal out of it.

Shukan Shinchi may have been right the kissing occurred. But I somehow can't forget this is a tabloid which has repeatedly denied the holocaust and that says something about what kind of magazine this is.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

@ least she has a life. What's the big deal? Kudos to her- demassifying the role's of a female in today's politics.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

http://www.tokyoreporter.com/2015/03/09/parliamentary-love-hotel-meetings-between-ldps-nakagawa-and-kado-preceded-street-kiss/

0 ( +0 / -0 )

http://www.tokyoreporter.com/2015/03/09/parliamentary-love-hotel-meetings-between-ldps-nakagawa-and-kado-preceded-street-kiss/

And what is your comment?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Used to chase after MARRIED politicians and to find his mistresses or lovers but about all married man does so this time Shukan Shincho did different. Woman flirt a man. But She is single. Maybe they will go bqck to chase after men and their mustresses?

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Nakagawa apologized. I hope the medial will not continue to bash her. Let her move on and continue her post- which she is prob very proficient. Its not like she committed something as shameful as . . . oh lets say, MONICA LEWINSKI.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

From a latin point of view, this is even more ridiculous. In my country, even if it's the president we almost don't care (and it may even make the person appear more human and friendly to some of his citizens). At the very least I don't see how such private things can be even close to be a cause of resignation or public apologizes. BS

3 ( +3 / -0 )

A peck on the cheek? A french kiss?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Good comment Quasar80. The French political circles in Paris must be laughing @ this bizarre non-stop too.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I don't even care if I get downvoted for this: I feel sorry for her. Being a widow must be difficult, and a woman in power as well. If it was just a kiss I say get on with work, seeing as she's genuinely sorry and she's apologized. Good on her colleagues for supporting her.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

@Torakichi: it was party. She just did what her male peer politicians do. Married or not, Japanese politicians openly do and often bring a girl to a hotel. She only kissed. She is singke, Why not?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

@toshiko Yes, I agree. If this were a male politician, I don't think the response would have been the same.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Who cares!! Even politicians are 'human' !!! She's a Widow, no harm, no foul to anyone in her family. Only a little embarrassment to her. Being a little drunk, being a woman, being a human being, at that moment felt that need for some sort of companionship, just the warmth of emotional return from someone. Let the Japanese Politician (or American in my case) or member of the Japanese media who is pure, innocent and clean, please stand up and raise your hand. Yeah, thought so.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Not important news, not really anybody else's business really.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Earlier, Nakagawa apologized to her colleagues at a House of Representatives committee meeting in the Diet. She was welcomed with applause and people shouting, “Do your best,” Sports Nippon reported.

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Instead of accusing men politician culture, she became one of them. Of cause men remember how it was to be target of weeklies. She got great sympathy.All she has to do is do good jobs.from now on.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Does going out boozing after work count as a "business trip"? Are these clowns claiming the cost of their night out on expenses? That's the real scandal.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

@Scrotum: yes in Japan, office parties are part of work. it is difficult not to attend even for foreigners.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

After work business meetings are very important. Maybe some are boozing but carefully you keep ears open. None drinkers attwend so that he.she/ will not be osteracized at work.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

@toshiko, you are exactly right. I do not attend because I cannot stand them anymore and I am on a complete dead end in my company.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Does going out boozing after work count as a "business trip"? Are these clowns claiming the cost of their night out on expenses? That's the real scandal.

It's not a business trip, but it's an entirely valid business expense in this country. Going out after work (supposedly) strengthens the bond in a team, and makes for a better working environment.

This isn't just a Japanese thing either. In America at least (and likely other western nations), the costs for Christmas parties and the like can be written off as a business expense at tax time. Taking out clients for socialization can also be written off.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Educator60: You are correct--I misread. I now change my opinion.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@Reckleaa: but in long run, they wlll have to use you, Top of top people do not like drinkers or party lovers as they don;t work well next day..

0 ( +1 / -1 )

So she gets the public shaming, and the guy involved gets two lines burried in the middle of the article. Well done, everybody.

Besides, who gives a fig? Private life stories, even if not a moral conduct.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Incredible, you mean there exists a place on earth where improper conduct of a quasi-sexual nature is frowned upon? Japan is a long way from the screw-em-if-you-got-em, Bill Clinton world, known as America. Surely this pretty lady can find a single guy, she doesn't need to cut the grass in another lady's yard.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@Steve: In USA. there is not many gossip magazines, There are monthly that catches bed stories but usually stories are suplied by people who were proud they had bedded with ..... People, USA Today are monthly and subscribers are hair dressing businesses. It is different culture. Kissing do not get on magazines in USA. Hollywood people proudly declare new love stories but they are ignored if not star, She is high official and single. Bill was married

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@toshiko "People, USA Today are monthly"

But also nowadays, along with TMZ , online with short stories that are updated daily. There is also the weekly supermarket tsbloid, National Enquirer, which broke the Jihn Edwards/Rielle Hunter affair/child story, as well as the the story of thd pregnancy of the daughter of Sarah Palin.

Anyway, as I mentioned earlier, a relevant factor of the Nakagawa/Kado drinking and kiss story is related to the timing, just hours after the resignation of her boss, Nishikawa.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

@Educatlor 6p: And mekake customs are unique in Japan. Very accepted and often potential husband wanna be tell potential brides that he will only have one mekake etc to brag his wealth at Omiai meeting. Ee yoroshii desu answer and they marry. That custom is not dead yet. So many girls in Japan choose single life instead marrying now in Japan, She is yamome so she demonstrated even yamomes can have free love life in Japan.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@toshiko "People, USA Today are monthly "

Earlier I mentioned these are available online but forgot to mention that actually even the print editions are not monthlies. People is a weekly magazine and USA Today is a daily newspaper, are they not?

I am well aware of the traditions involving wealthy men having mistresses, but similar customs can be found the world over. Yes, Nakagawa's is a widow but I'm not sure how she demonstrated widows can have a free live life since she has flatly denied having an affair with Kado. I wouldn't necessarily consider one kiss on the street to be a live life.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@Educator60: Yes, Nakagawa's is a widow but I'm not sure how she demonstrated widows can have a free live life

By kissing a married younger man in public.

To ask he will have only one mekake, two mekakes, at Omiai meetings. Are there any countries that have such proposal custom?

In Japan, if a married woman can not become pregnant, they are called Umazume. In Kanji, Ishi Onna. Then don;t worry your husband will have ato tsugi child by one of his mistress.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Sorry for the typos: live life should have been love life.

@toshiko Well I guess we will have to agree to disagree on that one. By her kissing a married younger man in public I don't think it demonstrated anything more than that she was drunk and showed poor judgement.

"To ask he will have only one mekake, two mekakes, at Omiai meetings. Are there any countries that have such proposal custom?"

I would not consider that so drastically different from cultures that practice polygamy, often with one wife being the first or head wife with more power than the others.

As for heirs being supplied by a mistress in the case of a barren wife, I believe I've read of that happening in China where the wife would raise a child of a concubine.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

In USA. Mormon people had polygamy lomg time ago. In Japan, it is not polygamy, Just mekake custom. Visit China, there is no mekake custom there. Marriage to one wife and lovers somewhere else. In tokyo and many other large cities, there are apartment houses that lease to mekake owners only. When you want to buy apartment buildings, agents will tell you that you will not have to worry rental income because the apartment is leased to mekake;s danna.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga told reporters that he had instructed Nakagawa to properly carry out her duties and conduct herself appropriately.

That's about all that needs to be said. Don't embarrass the government that she works for. As a widow, she isn't the one in the most trouble in this situation.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

After it was reported in a weekly, today Nakagawa apologized for breaking the rules by smoking in her hospital room because she was stressed out from being unable to sleep. Another show of poor judgement on her part in my opinion but I'm also not thrilled at the idea of someone ignoring patient privacy and leaking this information. Don't know how the weekly got the information but from a hospital what else could it be but an improper leak?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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