Wednesday 21 February 2018

Kenny plays Kennedy card as Labour left looking foolish

Eoghan Harris

Eoghan Harris

The Taoiseach has shown a sure touch from start to finish in promoting the Protection of Life during Pregnancy Bill. I say finish because Kenny's playing of the JFK card has secured him massive public backing. Hence he can take a hard line with hand-wringers.

Kenny's sound bite about not being a Catholic Taoiseach was most likely lifted from JFK's famous speech to Protestant ministers at Houston, Texas, on September 12, 1960, when he cut his Catholicism in two: "I am not the Catholic candidate for president. I am the Democratic Party's candidate for president, who happens also to be a Catholic."

Compare that with Kenny's: "I am proud to stand here as a public representative, as a Taoiseach who happens to be a Catholic but not a Catholic Taoiseach." Pity that Kenny did not dump the preamble and tighten up the antithesis – as the media has done since – to make it read cleanly: "I am a Taoiseach who happens to be a Catholic, not a Catholic Taoiseach."

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