John McCaslin

One thing is clear: Not all Irish eyes are smiling.

Our latest saga from the old sod begins with Irish Prime Minister Bertie Ahern praising the outcome of November's U.S. presidential race, saying "had Sen. (John) Kerry been elected, U.S. multinationals abroad would be subject to a new taxation, which would have had a significant impact on the Irish economy."

While expressing his congratulations and support for President Bush, Ahern also stressed: "We will always have a special relationship with the Democratic Party, and that will continue."

Fair enough?

No, says one leading Democrat - and in no uncertain terms.

"Bertie is kissing George Bush's (posterior)," Stella O'Leary of the Irish American Democrats lobbying group doesn't mind saying in the Irish Echo newspaper. "Ireland is not, and could never be, so desperate as to compromise, to suck up to George Bush."

In related news, the Irish American Unity Conference accepted the resignation of Tom Madigan as its press coordinator after he had labeled Bush a "chimp" and "stupid little twit."

"The electorate that decided to give this stupid little twit four more years will get exactly what it deserves," The Beltway Beat quoted Madigan as writing to IAUC members the morning after Election Day.

"No more can the American people hide behind the administration and point to its colossal ineptitude and vacuous foreign policies and claim innocence," he said. "The people have now chosen to put this chimp back in the White House for four more years."

John Fogarty, IAUC's national board member, told this column: "We would not ordinarily discuss organizational matters outside the organization, but we are dragged reluctantly to answer your question: Tom has already communicated his resignation; I can confirm that Tom Madigan has resigned from the IAUC."

The Washington-based wholly American 501c(4) lobbying group calls itself a "nonpartisan" chapter-based human-rights organization working for justice and peace in Ireland.

On that note, Fogarty said, "The truth is many of our members come from both parties of the U.S., and probably several more parties after that, but they don't guide the principles of either side of our organization."


Thanksgiving must be just around the corner, as Bruce Friedrich just finished writing annual holiday greetings to the White House.

"Dear President Bush," he begins. "May we talk turkey?"

This year, the vegan outreach coordinator for People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals wants the president to "correct the glaringly inaccurate statements about the presidential turkey pardoning that are posted on the presidential Web site.

John McCaslin

John McCaslin is a contributing columnist on and author of Inside The Beltway: Offbeat Stories, Scoops, and Shenanigans from around the Nation's Capital .

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