At a reception on Capitol Hill hosted by the National Italian American Foundation, Italian Ambassador Claudio Bisogniero greeted on  Wednesday evening (Feb 27) the new Italian American Congressional Delegation for 113th Congress.

Pat Tiberi, Claudio Bisogniero, Bill Pascrell

Pat Tiberi, Claudio Bisogniero, Bill Pascrell

“The relationship between Italy the United States is so profound and so solid” said Bisogniero.  The Ambassador noted that the 2013 Year of Italian Culture was happening at “the right time” because “these days Italy is in not in the front page of newspapers  for the right reason, we’re trying through this initiative  to put Italy in the front page of those papers for the right reasons.”

Representative Bill Pascrell (NJ-8), co-chair of the IACD said in his welcoming remarks, referring to the Italian elections held last Sunday,  “we pray that our mother country will put this together in a way that forms a government  that lasts more than two months.  This is serious business.  This is a great ally of the United States of America.”

Representative Pat Tiberi (OH-12), the other co-chair of the IACD, recounted in his remarks that Angelina, his nine-year old daughter, early this year wrote a report on one of her grandparents, and after completing her research she said to him: “Italians have done a lot for America!”  “We share a common culture that binds us—let’s celebrate what connects us tonight. We are so fortunate to have Ambassador Claudio Bisognero here with us tonight to help us strengthen our relationship with Italy,” Tiberi said. He encouraged everyone to get closer to Italy since the Italian people are facing difficult times. “When we help our mother country, we help our country,” he added.

Other Senators and Representatives who attended the reception included Senator Michael Enzi , Representatives Lou Barletta (PA); Suzanne Bonamici (OR); Michael Capuano (MA); David Cicilline (RI); Chris Collins (NY); Rosa L. DeLauro (CT); Mike Doyle (PA);Michael Grimm (NY); Marcy Kaptur (OH); Tom Marino (PA); Jim Renacci (OH); Brad Wenstrup (OH); and Ted Yoho (FL).  Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi recounted a recent reception at the White House when President Obama warmly greeted Italy’s President Giorgio Napolitano, and many Italian Americans. “It’s all about personal relationships and respect we have for each other,” she added. She thanked NIAF for their work in bringing everyone together this evening.