News about the Irish & Irish American culture, music, news, sports. This is hosted by the Irish Aires radio show on KPFT-FM 90.1 in Houston, Texas (a Pacifica community radio station)

January 30, 2008

'Irish Voice' Backs Hillary Clinton

Updated: 30/01/2008 01:23

'Irish Voice' backs Hillary Clinton

The Irish-American newspaper Irish Voice endorsed
Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton today,
saying no other candidate matches her "sterling record" on
Irish issues.

The New York-based newspaper said the former First Lady,
whose main rival Barack Obama was endorsed by Senator Ted
Kennedy this week, supported the peace process and was a
strong advocate for immigration reform.

It also said it was a pity "that both come along in the
same election" as there were "many extraordinary attributes
in both candidates".

The endorsement read: "Her record on issues of importance
to the Irish American community is crystal clear.

"She was with her husband every step of the way during his
intervention in the Irish peace process, without which
there would never have been the successful resolution that
we're currently witnessing in Northern Ireland.

"In her own right she played a significant role, visiting
Ireland seven times and creating cross community goodwill
which lasted long after her trips were over.

"Clinton is also a clear advocate for immigration reform
and attended three different rallies held by the Irish
Lobby for Immigration Reform, and spoke passionately on the

It went on: "For his part Obama has obviously had far less
sustained contact with the activist Irish American
community and its issues, but there is little doubt he is
fully committed to immigration reform and would continue to
be so if elected to the White House.

"However, it would be impossible for him to match the
sterling record of Hillary Clinton on Irish issues. She has
our complete support and endorsement."
© 2008

January 21, 2008

DUP's Anti-Irish Language Policies Damage Economic Investment


Contact: Kate McCabe (734) 657.2436


January 21, 2008—The Irish American Unity Conference today
condemned the recent anti-Irish language actions of DUP
Minister Edwin Poots, emphasizing the potential of such
blatantly discriminatory decisions to overshadow recent
attempts to attract foreign investment and promote fair
employment in the “new Northern Ireland.” In October,
Poots blocked the Irish Language Act promised by the
British government at St. Andrew’s despite receiving
overwhelming support, citing the belief that the promotion
of the language could “undermine good relations” and
“entrench patterns of antipathy and suspicions.” Now, the
Minister’s office has removed the funding for the Irish
Language Broadcast Fund from the budget. Poots’ stated
position on the promotion of Irish as divisive calls into
question his department’s ability to foster dialogue and
serves only to polarize community relations.

The IAUC believes that such decisions are a blatant display
of the sectarianism of the past, and not only work against
the encouragement of foreign investment, but run the risk
of replicating the problems of the past regarding resource
allocation and investment—thereby undermining any attempt
to build a solid foundation for just and inclusive social,
economic, and political change.

IAUC President John Fogarty said, “Rights-based Irish
language legislation would provide many opportunities for
the growth of the language and for the provision of
services to current speakers.

“We fear that the lack of funding and support from the
government has the potential to choke economic renewal
opportunities in the growth of the tourism industry related
to the Irish language, as well as in other community-based
development initiatives such as Fobairt Feirste.

“During their recent visit to the States, First and Deputy
First Ministers Paisley and McGuinness told American
politicians and businesspeople alike that the best way to
determine whether Northern Ireland is good for business is
simply to look at the political developments taking place
there,” Fogarty pointed out. “Anti-Irish language policies
operate as a deterrent to prospective investors who many of
us are working hard to convince that the days of
sectarianism and bigotry are in the past.”

Unionist politicians who stand in the way of Irish language
legislation are abdicating their responsibility to the
Northern Ireland community by undermining prospects for
increased investment and lasting economic change. The IAUC
pledges its full support for a rights-based Irish language
act and will continue to act as a watchdog to ensure fair
and equitable investment and employment in Northern
Ireland. To this end, the IAUC will seek meetings with key
members of Congress and all contenders in the Presidential


Irish American Unity Conference
PO Box 78
Selma, Indiana 47383
Irish American Unity Conference (800) 947-4282

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