'Tabloid star' Ryan Tubridy takes to US TV to tell Irish America: 'We need you now'
Published 14/03/2012 | 08:56
LATE Late Show host Ryan Tubridy has appeared on US TV to talk about his book on JFK’s visit to Ireland, and took the opportunity to invite Americans with Irish ancestry "home".
Tubridy, appearing on MSNBC’s ‘Morning Joe’, was called a “tabloid star” by host Willie Geist, who said the media here call him “Tubs” – which Tubridy said was due to “my weight problem - my lack of it.”
He also explained the ‘Late Late Show’ to viewers, calling Gay Byrne “the Irish Johnny Carson”, and saying “somebody else” did it for 10 years before him.
Tubridy explained his fascination with the Kennedys, saying “The first Kennedy left Wexford in 1848, and within four generations worked their way up to become the most famous and powerful family on the planet Earth, now I think that’s a good story, and I couldn’t resist it.”
Kennedy’s visit to Ireland was referred to as “a splash of Oz to Kansas” by Tubridy, who said the country was a bit of a “basket case” at the time.
The 2fm presenter also took the opportunity to do his bit for tourism, saying “We encourage everyone with a bit of Irish in them to come back home to Ireland like the President did in ’63, we need you now”.
Speaking about the President’s assassination, he said: “his story is replete with what ifs, what if he got re-election.” He claimed “a dark cloud” hung over Ireland for quite a long time after Kennedy’s death.
Tubridy released a book on Kennedy’s visit to Ireland in 2010 called ‘JFK in Ireland: four days that changed a President’, which won the 2010 Irish book Award's 'Irish Newcomer of the year'.