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Saturday 25 March 2017

Sinn Fein top Irish party for raising cash in America

Cormac McQuinn

Cormac McQuinn

SINN Fein is easily the top earner among Irish parties fundraising in the United States but Fianna Fail, Fine Gael, and even the PDs, have been registered to raise cash there in recent years.

Over the last year alone Sinn Fein has raised almost $400,000 (€299,000) on various events attended by party leader Gerry Adams and Northern First Minister and presidential candidate Martin McGuinness.

The bashes thrown by Mr Adams include a $500-a-plate 'Friends of Sinn Fein' dinner in Manhattan's Sheraton hotel in November 2010 and a dinner in Bobby Van's Grill in Washington DC on St Patrick's Day this year.

Documents filed with the US Justice Department show that Sinn Fein raised to just over $1,550,000, or about €1.16m, in the last three years.

The Labour Party was previously registered, very briefly in the summer of 1996 as 'Friends of Irish Labour in America'.

It is listed in the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA) filings for 24 days in June of that year, with then finance minister Ruairi Quinn named in the documents as the contact in Ireland, though no donations are listed.

Registered

Fine Gael hasn't been registered to fundraise in the United States since 2009.

Fianna Fail was FARA-registered between 1984 and 2003. The last year that shows any donations was 1999 when Fianna Fail declared $116,500 (€87,100).

Irish Independent

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