Seiko Hashimoto

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Seiko Hashimoto
橋本 聖子
Seiko Hashimoto 081222-A-8552S-495.jpg
Hashimoto speaking in Iraq in 2008 as State Secretary for Foreign Affairs
Member of the House of Councillors
Incumbent
Assumed office
July 1995
Personal details
Born (1964-10-05) October 5, 1964 (age 49)
Hayakita, Hokkaido, Japan
Political party Liberal Democratic Party
Children Three
Alma mater Komazawa University Tomakomai Senior High School

Seiko Hashimoto (橋本 聖子, married name: Seiko Ishizaki (石崎 聖子),[1] born October 5, 1964 in Hayakita, Hokkaido) is a Japanese politician who was formerly a speed skater and track cycling sprinter. She has the most Olympic appearances of any Japanese athlete, representing her native country in four consecutive Winter Olympics from 1984 to 1992 and in three consecutive Summer Olympics from 1988 to 1996.[2] She is currently a member of the House of Councillors from the Liberal Democratic Party, and serves as the President of the Japan Skating Federation.

Early life and athletic career[edit]

Hashimoto was born in Hayakita, Hokkaido in 1964. Her father gave her the name Seiko after the Olympic Flame (seika 聖火), inspired by the Tokyo Olympics that year. She graduated from a high school affiliated with Komazawa University in 1983 and joined the Fuji Kyuko railway company.[1]

Seiko Hashimoto
Medal record
Women's Speed skating
Bronze Albertville 1992 1500 metres

She appeared in her first Olympics in 1984 in Sarajevo, competing in 500, 1,000, 1,500 and 3,000 m speed skating events. In the 1988 Winter Olympics in Calgary, she placed fifth in both the 500 and 1,000 m speed skating events. She won the bronze medal in the 1500 m speed skating event in her third Winter Olympic appearance at the 1992 Winter Olympics in Albertville, France, and also competed in the 1994 Winter Olympics in Lillehammer, placing sixth in the 3,000 m speed skating event.[2]

Her first Summer Olympics appearance as a cycling sprinter was at the 1988 Summer Olympics in Seoul, where she placed fifth in the women's sprint. She placed eleventh in the 3,000 m individual pursuit at the 1992 Summer Olympics in Barcelona, and ninth in the point race at the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta.[2]

Political career[edit]

Hashimoto resigned from Fuji Kyuko in 1993 and was elected to the House of Councillors in 1995, winning re-election in three subsequent elections. She served as Vice-Minister for Hokkaido Development from 2000 to 2001, as chair of the Education Committee from 2001 to 2003, as deputy secretary-general of the LDP from 2003, and as state secretary (senior vice-minister) for foreign affairs under the Taro Aso administration (2008-2009).[1]

Hashimoto gave birth to a daughter in 2000, followed by two sons. She initially entrusted employees of her political office with the care of her children while at work, but led an initiative to establish a child care facility at the Diet of Japan, which opened in 2010.[3]

Following the resignation of Tokyo governor Naoki Inose on December 19, 2013, she was widely rumored to be a potential candidate for the gubernatorial election expected to be held in February 2014, along with Yuriko Koike, Hakubun Shimomura, Hideo Higashikokubaru and Yoichi Masuzoe.[4] The LDP excluded her name from consideration in a December 20th telephone poll due to her responsibilities as head of the Japanese competitor delegation to the 2014 Winter Olympics.[5]

In August 2014, Hashimoto became embroiled in accusations of sexual harassment[6] of Japanese male figure skater Daisuke Takahashi. Weekly magazine Shukan Bunshun published a story with several photographs showing Hashimoto and Takahashi dancing at a party following the closing of the Sochi Winter Olympics. The story alleged that Hashimoto had kissed Takahashi several times despite the latter's obvious attempts to resist. Hashimoto denied the allegations. Takahashi's management also said that the popular skater had not been harassed.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c "議員情報". House of Councillors, National Diet of Japan. Retrieved 20 December 2013. 
  2. ^ a b c "Seiko Hashimoto". Sports Reference. Retrieved 20 December 2013. 
  3. ^ "“国会保育園”オープンへ 橋本聖子さんら「利用したい」". 日本経済新聞. 4 August 2010. Retrieved 20 December 2013. 
  4. ^ "猪瀬知事が辞職表明 「都政を停滞させられない」". 日本経済新聞. 19 December 2013. Retrieved 20 December 2013. "自民党の石破茂幹事長は19日午前、東京都連幹部と協議し、年内の候補者決定を目指す方針を確認した。党内では小池百合子元防衛相や下村博文文部科学相、橋本聖子参院議員らの名前が取り沙汰されている。7月の参院選への出馬を見送った元新党改革代表の舛添要一氏、日本維新の会を離党して衆院議員を辞職した東国原英夫氏らの名前も浮上している。" 
  5. ^ "都知事選「勝てる候補」は? 自民、7氏選び世論調査". 日本経済新聞. 21 December 2013. Retrieved 24 December 2013. 
  6. ^ http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/kyodo-news-international/140820/politician-joc-official-denies-harassing-2010-medalist

External links[edit]