01 March 2017

Labour Senator Aodhán Ó Ríordáin has welcomed the call by former US presidential candidate Martin O’Malley, for the Taoiseach to boycott his annual St. Patrick’s Day visit to the White House.

The former Maryland Governor has launched an online #NoShamrocks petition, which will be delivered to all Irish American Members of Congress and the Irish Embassy in Washington.

Senator Ó Ríordáin commented:

“As Governor O’Malley quite rightly pointed out on RTÉ radio this morning, the anti-immigrant rhetoric being spouted by President Donald Trump is not only un-American, but the antithesis of the Irish American immigrant experience in US history.

“Not only does President Trump not share our values, he is openly hostile to them, and I agree with Governor O’Malley that the Irish Government should stand up for decency.

“The Irish American relationship is one of our most valuable and it will endure- but now is not the time to pay lip service to a President who seeks to divide rather than unite.

“To this effect, myself and a number of colleagues from different backgrounds have organised a rally for St. Patrick’s Day in New York City to tell the real story of the Irish – a story of immigration, seeking refuge, overcoming suppression and conflict.

“Having spoken to Governor O’Malley last night, I know he feels strongly about this issue, and I look forward to taking a stand against hate and division in in New York on March 17th.”

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