Opinion

Thursday 22 June 2017

Hillary or Jeb? There are other choices to a dynastic succession

Why do we slavishly support Hillary Clinton?

HAIR APPARENT: Donald Trump and his improbable hair have livened up a dull election campaign no end
HAIR APPARENT: Donald Trump and his improbable hair have livened up a dull election campaign no end
Ruth Dudley Edwards

Ruth Dudley Edwards

More than 20 American presidents have had ancestral links to Ireland. The vast majority were from among Ulster-Scots frontiersman, which is why nationalists have mostly pretended they didn't exist. When we talk of Irish-America, we mean Catholic nationalist stock and the Democratic Party: no Prods or big 'R' Republicans need apply. We went wild for the Kennedys and we turned up our noses at Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan and the Bushes despite their Irish heritage.

Bill Clinton and Barack Obama are our Irish presidents of choice, although Clinton has no Irish blood and Obama has only a drop. We've been ahead of the game on the right of people to be transracial: if they say they're Irish and we want them to be Irish, they're Irish.

Which is why the Irish nationalist tribe will be rooting for Hillary Clinton, who has no Irish blood but has been wooing us for more than 20 years and is fawned on by so-called leaders of Irish-America like Niall O'Dowd, who had her inducted into the Irish Hall of Fame by talking up her preposterous claim to have been an important player in the peace process.

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