Americans in Ireland gather to party
IT WAS the night before the morning after as American citizens living in Ireland and those with a love for US politics came together to watch the 57th US presidential election in Dublin last night.
A viewing party organised by the US Embassy saw the Guinness Storehouse decked in red, white and blue for the occasion with a CNN feed blaring from large screens dotted around the second floor where the diehard politicos had stationed themselves.
The election candidates were also present in the shape of life-size cardboard cut-outs where many a guest stopped to pose for photos.
Judging by the number of Obama/Biden badges pinned to lapels, the incumbent was the favourite. There were, however, some exceptions.
Suzanne Mumma – originally from Pennsylvania but living here since 2008 – has been a Republican from a very early age. “When I was born instead of announcing it’s a girl or it’s a boy I was born a ‘brand new Republican’,” she said. Her parents have been on the phone constantly in recent weeks to ensure she uses her absentee vote. “I’m going to stay up. I stayed up last night until 5am just watching the prelim . . . It’s really down to the wire,” Mumma said.
And while Obama enjoyed strong Irish support among the guests there was one person among the assembled crowd who has closer connections than most. Henry Healy, Obama’s distant Moneygall cousin admitted he was nervous ahead of the election.
“Everything is indicating that it’s going to be a tight race, that has me nervous . . . but I’m a bit more hopeful than I was two weeks ago that the president will still be in office come the morning.”