A FORMER US ambassador to Ireland has declared her backing for presidential candidate Barack Obama because of his similarities to Irish peace process architect, John Hume.
Jean Kennedy Smith, the sister of Senator Edward Kennedy, served as Irish Ambassador between 1993 and 1998 in the build-up to the Good Friday Agreement.
She added that what she had been taught by Hume was similar to what she had been taught by her late brothers President John F Kennedy and Robert Kennedy.
She said Hume embodied "the persevering spirit and inspiring vision that led Northern Ireland out of its darkest night of the soul.
"John helped us all cling to the vision of a better future," she wrote. "We need leaders who speak to our sense of hope, to the easily forgotten sense of fellowship that we all have with one another," she said.