Remarks by President Obama and Taoiseach of Ireland Brian Cowen

over here to meet a man whose forebears, as he said, was in my electoral district (inaudible). But since we’re not related — before coming to Ireland, the only thing I can say to him is he’s not going to share a slate with me over there, because I can’t compete with this man even in Ireland. (Laughter.) Because he would be very, very welcome.

And we look forward to an excellent discussion, as I said, on issues of mutual interest. And we are deeply grateful and appreciative of the wonderful access that our country is accorded on this great day for Ireland. And he reminds us, of course, that we are not simply an island nation, but a disperse global family — and nowhere is that more celebrated than is this great country.

PRESIDENT OBAMA: Just one last point that I would like to make, and that is although I think it’s wonderful that he visited the Oval Office and Washington, what you’re really missing out on is the South Side Irish Parade in Chicago — (laughter) –

TAOISEACH COWEN: I’ve been there.

PRESIDENT OBAMA: — which I believe is one of the great events in America. It is a lot of fun. Although as President I don’t think I could have as much fun as I could before I was President at that parade, because I have press following me all the time.

But, anyway, welcome, thank you so much for being here. Thank you, guys; appreciate it. We got to get down to business.

(Source: White House)

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