MP Guto Bebb & Rep. Charles Dent (PA-R) in front of the Capitol
Continuing a nearly 75-year-old tradition, Meridian welcomed a group of British Parliament Members (MPs) in July on an exchange program co-sponsored by the U.S. Department of State and the U.K. Parliament’s House of Commons Commission and the House of Lords House Committee. The program, collectively called the “British American Parliamentary Group (BAPG)” is an integral component of the historical partnership between the United Kingdom and the United States. It seeks to strengthen transatlantic relations among current and emerging political leaders through a series of structured professional exchanges.
During their 10-day visit to the U.S., the six British Parliamentarians networked with Members of Congress at a Congressional Reception held on Capitol Hill, visited Washington’s political landmarks, and shadowed Representatives from both the Democratic and Republican parties for a day to learn about the U.S. political system.
The highlight of the program, however, was when the MPs traveled in tandem with their American counterparts. Representatives from Minnesota, Alabama, North Carolina, California, and Pennsylvania each welcomed an MP to their congressional district to allow the MP to familiarize themselves with the U.S. legislative and judicial processes, local constituent outreach and relations, and best practices in eco-green initiatives. In addition, the political leaders collectively examined areas of mutual concern, such as national security, the role of the media in the political system, and current initiatives aimed at local economic development.
The program drew to a close as the MPs convened in Boston where they dialogued with speakers from Harvard University, the Massachusetts Secretary of Business Development, and the Institute for Foreign Policy Analysis.
Through the implementation of the BAPG program, Meridian assists the U.S. State Department in promoting a deeper understanding of American economy, politics, and culture to foster international understanding and an enduring alliance between the two countries.
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