Adams: I don’t want to be Irish president…

GERRY Adams hasn’t gone completely away, you know. But he will be – yesterday, he was on Newstalk to rule himself out of the running for the Irish presidency. “There is a life outside politics. No, under no circumstances,” he said when asked. And why not? “I’ve been locked up in an institution before.” Very witty, but I find it hard to believe that an ambitious politician with such a high opinion of himself will allow his star to fade totally…

  • This is not news. Nothing strange about that – do we expect news on Newstalk? Gerry Adams ruled it out a long time ago in an interview with Lá Nua, a story which if I recall sparked some comment here.

    However it’s not unreasonable to assume that Mr Adams will find a worthwhile role for himself outside of party politics.

    Becoming President and allowing the Irish Government a veto over what he says and does in public is not something a politician of his stature would countenance.

    The north Dublin residence of An tUachtarán appears to me that it is the perfect stop gap accomodation for An taoiseach….

  • Up da Republic

    Olly, I think you’d have a better chance, running as breala, that Gerry.

  • Greenflag

    No, under no circumstances,” he said when asked. And why not? “I’ve been locked up in an institution before.”

    ‘Very witty’

    And also very true 🙂 The Irish Presidency is a symbolic role a bit like Queenie minus the tiaras and jewels and the head of church nonsense . And without wishing to sound like a reverse chauvinist the Irish Presidency is now seen as a woman’s job 🙂

    MAybe there’s a comedian under the beard trying to work it’s way out :).

    But fair dues to Adams . Looking around at the political landscape in Ireland -North or South the political pickings are scant indeed . The chances of SF making a breakthrough past the 10% mark in the Republic in the near future are not good . And in Northern Ireland what passes for politics is in fact just a bunch of locals being puppet mastered from Westminster.

    I’d say Adams will return when he’s ready and if there is a real opportunity . Anyway the man probably deserves a break given that he’s given most of his life to the ’cause’.

    ‘There is a life outside politics’

    ‘Dealing with Northern Ireland is like handling a fight in a bar . It is a stupid local row between people who just aren’t American enough ‘

    Bill Clinton

  • manichaeism

    Haven’t heard that particular Bill Clinton quote before.

    Bit stupid coming from an American.

    When they wanted to get rid of British rule they started a war to do it.

  • ”Every time they make an agreement to do it, they’re like a couple of drunks walking out of the bar for the last time,” he said of the on-again, off-again peace process between Protestants and Catholics in Northern Ireland. ”When they get to the swinging door, they turn around and go back in and say, ‘I just can’t quite get there.’ ” He later said the metaphor was inappropriate, and expressed ”regret for any offense my remarks caused.” New York Times October 9, 1999

  • The Dubliner

    The fact that he was laughed out of the Republic as an ignorant buffoon during the last general election may have influenced his decision. 😉

  • Greenflag

    ‘Bit stupid coming from an American.’

    All right ‘inappropriate’ from a world politician . But let’s face it -some jokes have more than a ring of truth !

    Tony Blair could easily have said

    ‘Dealing with Northern Ireland is like handling a fight in a bar . It is a stupid local row between people who just aren’t British enough ‘

    EVEN Bertie could have said

    ‘Dealing with Northern Ireland is like handling a fight in a bar . It is a stupid local row between people who just aren’t Irish enough ‘

    So whether American/British/Irish is used it doesn’t matter 🙂

    Overheard in a Dublin bar


    ‘What’s the difference between a NIC (Norn Iron Catholic a NIP (Norn Iron Prod ) and an Englishman ?


    When you smack the NIC on the head with a sledgehammer you have to tell him/her to fall down . When you hit the NIP on the head with the same sledgehammer you have to explain to him/her slowly why he/she must fall down . And when you hit the Englishman on the head with the same sledgehammer he says

    ‘Ta mate that was nice can you do it again please’

    He’s the gobshite taxpayer who’s been paying for the stupidity !

    Apologies if I have offended anybody but it was the Limavady farce that brought these ‘yarns’ to mind !

  • “Beam him up”, says Kelly (image)

  • BfB

    ‘When they wanted to get rid of British rule they started a war to do it.’

    Finishing it was the brilliant stroke in that one.

  • Greenflag

    ‘When they wanted to get rid of British rule they started a war to do it.’

    Of course the only way at the time and as history around the world has shown us since usually the case notwithstanding the inevitable post colonial civil wars/ethnic conflicts set off in wake of withdrawal . The Americans were lucky to be 3,000 miles away and thus managed to win but even then it was a close run thing . Ireland tried to follow the USA example but geography in our case was a hindrance rather than a help . 1798 was the last major ‘blood letting ‘ on British or Irish soil in the last 200 years with some 40,000 estimated to have been killed .

  • BfB

    Starving to death being a bloodless death and all.

  • Greenflag, 1798 was, er, more than 200 years ago …

  • ulsterfan

    Gerry has ruled out the Irish Presidency in favour of sitting in the House of Lords as Lord Gortahurk.
    This can be easily granted by the chuckle Brothers.
    He has more chnce getting to the Lords than The Aras.

  • lib2016

    The Americans succeeded not just because they fought but because they had friends in France and elsewhere who were able to put pressure on the English. Now they are passing it on by ensuring that the British accepted a compromise agreement which gave something to all parties.

  • My respect for Mr Adams has grown over the years. This is a man who went from the trenches to a willingness to broker. In the process he dropped the hardline rhetoric of division, in the quest for a way through the sectarian divide.

    Gerry’s a rare man. The fact that he’s pulled back a bit recently is understandable. It remains to be seen what destiny has in store for him.

  • “There is a life outside politics.”

    Is this the wrong place to wish that life was Paul Quinn’s? Or to hope that Gerry might explain why he knows who didn’t do it.

  • Kathy C

    posted by Kathy C

    Gerry Adams has never been the same since he went to America and was stripped searched in the airport. He was always going to America..but since that fateful day he has sent alot of other people from Sinn Fein….Personally, he is a has been and knows it…and is saving himself the embarassment

  • The Dubliner

    Vincent Browne wrote an article for the SBP called “IRA insanity hasn’t gone away, you know” wherein he wondered if Gerry Adams was as mentally deranged as his supporters or just a very clever and devious manipulator of the mentally ill:

    “I confess I had long discarded the idea that anybody still believed that the legitimate government of Ireland was the IRA Army Council, which derived its authority from the first Dáil, elected in 1918.The idea is so stark raving bonkers that one assumes nobody could accept it.

    My God, there are people out there who think the IRA Army Council is the real government.

    They think the IRA Army Council has a legitimate authority to set up courts martial, to try people, to sentence them to death and have them executed.

    Not even the crudeness of the process offends them or causes them to demur.

    Worse than that, the implication is that the likes of Gerry Adams buy into it.

    However debonair that exterior, however media-savvy, however clever, far-seeing and dispassionate, there is another side of him that actually believes there is no legitimate authority in Ireland that does not derive its legitimacy from the 1918 election – and only the IRA Army Council can claim that.

    Or at least he pretends to buy into that hokum, because he thinks so many others who matter to him do so.”

    I think it is fair to say Gerry Adams has de facto clarified his position. He accepts the legitimacy of the Irish Republic and rejects the claim that PIRA’s so-called ‘Army Council’ is the legitimate government of Ireland, having the authority to declare war. Since he now de facto concedes that PIRA’s campaign was not a war, he de facto admits that it was a sectarian murder campaign that was rightly countered through the criminal justice system. He de facto admits that he and his ilk were murderers and criminals, yet this amoral degenerate still thinks that he is fit for public office – showing the utter contempt that sociopaths harbour for others.

    At least Gerry Adams (as ever) is one-step ahead of his slower-witted supporters.

  • Crataegus

    Let us face it if he ran;

    1 He would have NO chance of winning.
    2 Following his performance in the last election his high profile would be the kiss of death for SF in the south.

    Life beyond politics is a wise decision.

  • USA

    Kathy C,
    To say Gerry Adams was strip searched during a visit the the US is just dumb. Plenty of stupid people in the world and evidently they are not all Americans.

  • The Dubliner

    Cartaegus, you’re correct of course. I think the Provos mistakenly believe that the citizens of the Republic buy their self-serving propaganda and skip over the moral issues as easily as the citizens of Northern Ireland do.

    One of the key issues he would be forced to confront, if he was deluded enough to run for the office of president (the guardian of the Irish constitution), would be to explain why he and his demented ilk spent several decades trying to overthrow the Republic and establish a socialist dictatorship against the will of the people, showing abject contempt for democracy, for law and constitutional rights, and the right of the Irish people to self-determination, ect, if he never believed that the Irish Republic was illegitimate and if he never believed that PIRA was the lawful government of Ireland. At what point did he change his mind about that? At what point did he recognise that he was engaged in criminal activity? And why has he not made a confession to that effect, along with an apology to all whom were murdered on that pretext? If he hasn’t changed his mind, then why would now imply that the presidency is a legitimate entity when provisional doctrine holds that it is illegitimate? The ‘principle’ that Provisionals cited to justify their dementia isn’t subject to political expediency: either the Republic is illegitimate or it isn’t. This can’t be passed off as a rejection of an abstentionist policy, or a fudge about running for office but not accepting the seat if elected.

    The citizens of Northern Ireland are prepared to indulge Gerry Adams and his ilk when he claims that the sectarian murder campaign that he played a key role in organising was a war waged by a legitimate government and then contradicts himself by de facto saying that the actual legitimacy rests with the elected government of Ireland and not with the self-appointed government (AKA the Army Council), but I see no reason to allow contradictions to stand just to smooth the political path of ‘reformed’ criminal degenerates.

    “I hereby further declare that the Provisional Executive and the Provisional Army Council are the lawful Executive and Army Council respectively of the IRA and that the governmental authority delegated in the Proclamation of 1938 now resides in the Provisional Army Council and its lawful successors. I fully endorse their call for support for Irish people everywhere towards the realisation of the full freedom of Ireland.
    Dated: 31 December 1969
    Signed: Thomas Maguire, Comdt. Gen. (Tomás Mac Uidhir).”

    Indeed, and I hereby declare that I am Bill Gates and have a spare 60 billion dollars to spend as I choose. You can declare yourself to be Napoleon Bonaparte and the Emperor of France if you like.

  • Belfast Gonzo


    The first delay is at the check-in desk. Then at the security section. Then just before boarding. Sometimes our bags are checked twice, and we have been body searched three times. A couple of times, our bags have been taken off the plane for another search.

    Gerry Adams, The Guardian, Friday August 24 2007

    Think you owe Kathy an apology. And never ‘misunderestimate’ the American capacity for stupidity.

  • lib2016

    Is this the same Gerry Adams who was a partner with John Hume in first proposing the Irish Peace Process which has led to our current system of government? The same Gerry Adams which an Irish Times poll confirmed only a week ago as having the largest approval rating (48%) of any political party leader in Ireland?

    It would seem that Sinn Fein’s enemies having failed to defeat them in real life are now resorting to fantasy politics. It will take more than one freak election result to make Sinn Fein go away.

  • Turgon

    Clearly I despise Adams’s views and most things about him. However, to analyse why he has vanished a bit one maybe should look at where we are.

    Adams has always struck me as regarding himself as an intellectual and thinker; not so much a day to day tactician as a strategist. Take lib’s comment above. The Hume Adams stuff was as far as anyone can establish about strategy not day to day politics. Currently we are in day to day politics; that is something Adams has never done before. I genuinely wonder if Adams finds all that sort of thing a bit boring.

    I do not know him family circumstances and they are none of my business but he may also be in a stage in his life where he would rather do that sort of thing than the politics.

    Finally I do wonder if he fancied being Irish president but has enough insight to realise that that option has at least temporarily closed.

    Despise what this man stands for as I do and regard him as having been responsible for much of the ills which befell us; I do not regard him as some sort of republican superman. He may not be that suited to the current climate. That does not mean he has gone away you know.

  • BfB

    There is a huge difference between being STRIP searched, and body searched. Body searched is a clothed pat down.

  • CS Parnell

    @The Dubliner

    Cos he’s a liar.

  • Kathy_C

    posted by Kathy C

    I was speaking with my sister today about this thread…and she made a very interesting comment…
    “Of course Gerry Adams doesn’t want to be the president of Ireland…cause that is an Irish thing and Gerry is too busy kissing the backside of the british and doing the british thing.”

    What insight!

  • Greenflag

    ‘Greenflag, 1798 was, er, more than 200 years ago ‘

    ‘Nevin, 1690 was ,er, more than 300 years ago ‘

    Unlike the horizon the past in Norn Iron keeps getting closer the further it is away 🙁