Friday 22 September 2017

Why Ireland Funds' decision to honour undeserving vice-president Pence is the wrong one

The decision to honour Mr Pence was announced unilaterally by The Ireland Funds in early February, before the ink had dried on the Muslim travel ban. Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images
The decision to honour Mr Pence was announced unilaterally by The Ireland Funds in early February, before the ink had dried on the Muslim travel ban. Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images

Patricia Danaher

US Vice President Mike Pence will be the surprising recipient of an honour in Chicago at a dinner hosted by the Irish American philanthropic organisation, The Ireland Funds, on March 15. Along with assorted worthies from the worlds of business, politics and the Church will be Taoiseach Enda Kenny and the Irish Ambassador to the US, Anne Anderson.

In a dependable annual ritual, Irish politicians will descend en masse next week to cities like New York, Boston, Chicago and San Francisco to press the flesh with local politicians and businesses.

The idea behind the annual St Patrick's Day boondoggle is that it fosters goodwill towards Ireland, as well as current and future Irish immigrants, while at the same time reminding the descendants of Irish emigrants that the old country is open for business, perched on the edge of the EU, with generous corporate tax structures to boot.

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