Niall O’Dowd: The emigrant’s candidate for President?

And in an interesting contrast with the emergence of Pat Cox as a potential ‘Berlin’ candidate for Fine Gael, Mr O’Dowd could offer himself as a ‘Boston’ candidate. Here’s his preliminary pitch on his blog:

I believe the race for the Irish presidency would be immeasurably broadened by having an Irish Diaspora voice if I decided to run.

The time for lip service to that Diaspora is over. It is time to make that voice for 40 million Irish Americans heard loud and clear — not to mention the tens of thousands that will soon be joining that journey west or Down Under.

I was totally taken aback during the recent visit to Ireland for the Obama visit to have a group of influential Irish figures approach me on this very issue.

They see that the Diaspora, when it comes to tourism and direct investment, are deeply important for the future of Ireland. They feel that the past leadership in Ireland has utterly failed the country and that the answer these days lies far more in Boston than Berlin.

I wholeheartedly agree.

He was apparently pressed into it when he came over for the Obama visit. It will be fascinating to see where his political support (a crucial qualifier for any Presidential candidate) comes from…

Mick is founding editor of Slugger. He has written papers on the impacts of the Internet on politics and the wider media and is a regular guest and speaking events across Ireland, the UK and Europe. Twitter: @MickFealty