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Jim Cain Tackles Ambassadorship Challenges

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RALEIGH, N.C. — "There's something rotten in the state of Denmark." Shakespeare wrote those words in 1599; but today, the U.S. ambassador to Denmark says times have definitely changed. Raleigh attorney and businessman Jim Cain says the Danes are a strong European ally of the United States.

It was last fall when Cain stood in the old state house chambers and took his oath as ambassador. He was back home this week, taking time for breakfast with Agricultural Commissioner Steve Troxler and Danish businessmen visiting from Copenhagen. Cain also talked with WRAL about the job and what he left behind.

"I've been so busy in the last five months, I didn't realize how homesick I was until I hit the runway at RDU," said Cain.

Cain is one of 30 ambassadors appointed by the president. He takes the job very seriously, focusing in three specific areas: the war on terror, rebuilding relationships with European countries opposed to the Iraqi war, and bringing foreign business to North Carolina.

"Three noble, honorable goals, and for me not to put my entire energy and passion into it would be unfaithful to the American people," he said.

Once a high profile Raleigh attorney, Cain is also remembered for helping the Carolina Hurricanes bring the Stanley Cup playoffs to Raleigh. The arena was packed night after night. Cain is confident he can transfer that same success to his new job.

"We are committed to repairing relationships with Europe that were strained in the first Bush term," he said. "They were good policies, but strained relationships in Europe. It's working out very well."

So well that Cain's name is often mentioned as a candidate for governor in 2008. But he's quick to knock down the speculation.

"I am spending zero time trying to plan strategy and plan for anything beyond this assignment, because this assignment is too important," said Cain.


David Crabtree, Reporter
Dana Franks, Web Editor

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