Rep. Michael M. Honda, D-Calif., is hosting his annual Lunar New Year party on Thursday; the soiree traditionally serves as a fundraiser for his re-election campaign.
The Lunar New Year marks the first day of the year in several East Asian cultures and is celebrated for the whole month of February. The Lunar New Year began on Feb. 8.
At 6 p.m., this invite only event will be held at a Capitol Hill residence at 434 New Jersey Ave SE. Honda serves as chairman emeritus of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus. He usually invites members of the American and Pacific Islander community in the beltway, as well as prominent Asian American Pacific Islander lawmakers.
Last year, Reps. Judy Chu, D-Calif., chairwoman of the caucus, Mark Takai, D-Hawaii, and Grace Meng, D-N.Y., attended the event and they are expected back this year.
Honda, a Japanese-American, previously was chairman of the caucus for seven years. As an infant, the congressman was placed with his family into a Japanese-American internment camp in Colorado for during World War II, along with thousands of other Japanese-Americans. He became a key participant in the lobbying campaign for the 1988 law that provided a formal apology and compensation for those interned.
Honda's event is competing with the 72nd Annual Washington Press Club Foundation Congressional Dinner, also on Thursday evening. That dinner, always a popular one with lawmakers, features light-hearted speeches by Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., and retiring Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., at 6:30 p.m. at the Mandarin Oriental.