Friday, June 29, 2007

Labour Party Leader Speaks Out in Ireland

STATEMENT BY MICHAEL D HIGGINS TD
Irish Labour Party President and Spokesperson for Foreign Affairs
Friday, 29 June 2007

POLITICAL PRESSURE MUST BE MAINTAINED ON BEHALF OF UNDOCUMENTED IRISH

Labour Party President and Spokesperson on Foreign Affairs, Michael D Higgins TD, has expressed sincere disappointment at last night's US Senate vote that saw the proposal to debate a new Immigration Reform Bill defeated by seven votes.

Deputy Higgins commented, "Last night's decision not even to debate the reform proposals comes as a real setback for all those who have campaigned to legalise the status of the many thousands of undocumented Irish living, working and raising families in the United States.

"These people make a significant contribution to the US economy, yet enjoy no security of status or the ability to return home to visit their wider families.

"I am therefore calling on the Government and the Minister for Foreign Affairs, Dermot Ahern, in particular, to continue to press their American counterparts for a new deal for the undocumented Irish.

"The Labour Party has long supported the main elements of the original Kennedy/McCain initiative and we continue to support all efforts being made to regularise the status of the estimated 30,000 Irish people in the United States who find themselves in this position.

"The political pressure must be maintained and I will continue to raise this issue with US authorities and representatives at every opportunity."

19 comments:

sme said...

do you really think these scumbags care about us, if they did then this mess would have been sorted out long ago.the poor mouth act is getting old here,do something real for us like australia did or prepare for a cold reception here in san fran on march 17th...........actions speak louder than words,we re sick and tired of our irish politicians lip service .

Anonymous said...

I'm not Irish, but nevertheless it is obvious that I wouldn't be here if this issue didn't affect me. Just a quick note: The Hispanic community is organizing itself over the weekend, thru blogs and discussions online, and emails to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi asking the Congress to take on the Flake-Gutierrez proposal or the DREAM act and MOST importantly, the reinstitution of 245(i) which allows U.S. residents to petition for relatives and allows the beneficiaries to remain in the U.S. while their petition is in process. If this is reinstated, all who have a resident spouse, mother, father or sibling is entitled to a petition for residency and allowed to remain in the US until the petition is finalized. This makes a huge difference because almost everyone has a relative who is documented, but the law currently allows only for US citizens to petition for spouses, parents and children, not siblings. You can contact speaker Pelosi at http://www.speaker.gov/contact

We have nothing to lose at this point, good luck to us all.

wander lust said...

I wonder how many Americans are residing illegally in Ireland. Maybe we could do a swap?

Anonymous said...

James Webb from Virgina is a senator who claim Scoth Irish desent he knifed us in the back with the senate vote. He has a book out call Born Fighting about Scoth Irish we should have a boycot of it and burn any copys if you have it
John McKane

Anonymous said...

With the likes of Peter King in the house I do not think there will be much luck in any one getting legalized!

Anonymous said...

Maybe the Irish Politicians do not care about us! but if the dont step up to the plate and bat for us now, we all be back there with a vote.With 50,OOO undocumented here that could change a lot. Not only the vote but 50,000 undocumented landing back there with kids ,the cost to the Goverment
with doles alone should change ther minds on working with us to get some kind of a deal through.

Time to get everyone you know in Ireland to start putting the pressure on their TDs!

We can not give up now after 20 years here I know I cant!

ps: To Niall, just want to say, your a Great Irish American!

Anonymous said...

Hopefully there will be a bi-lateral visa agreement between Ireland and the US.... but don't hold your breath. Let's face it, Congress was never going to pass a bill that would grant citizenship to over 12 million people, especially when the vast majority were from the one ethnic group. It was naive to think that our politicians would be influenced by less than 50,000 'undocumented Irish'. Now it will be interesting to see if the Irish Government, the ILIR, AOH, and all the other Irish-American organizations have any sway here. My guess is that we will get a lot of lip service from our Irish-American politicians but when push comes to shove we will be told that there cannot be a special deal for the Irish or there will have to be a special deal with the Germans, the Italians, the Polish, God forbid, the English, etc.
That cannot happen without an overwhelming outcry from the Hispanic community of racism. I hope I am wrong!
I think the undocumented Irish should be making contingency plans to move back to Ireland, and/or resign themselves to live in the shadows for as long as they can here.
My advice is to work hard, save your money, don't get in any trouble, and live here with the understanding that you may have to leave at a moments notice.
As an Irish person who came here nearly 20 years ago, lived here for a number of years without a Green Card before I was lucky enough to get a Donnelly visa, and am now a citizen...I am saddened to see how the Irish have lost their political power. We are not looked on with the same respect and kindness that we were a couple of decades ago by Americans. The undocumented Irish are seen as just as much a part of the problem as the Mexicans.

It is with a heavy heart that I am now, for the first time in 20 years, considering leaving America. I feel as unwanted as my undocumented brothers and sisters.
I may return to an Ireland that has passed me by....
I may be even viewed as an outsider by my old Irish friends.... but it is something I am considering.

Anyway, there is always Australia.....

B. Coleman

seamus ryan said...

We`ll continue to keep cool heads and loose trousers, there`s no point in over-reacting or taking it personally, let`s sit back for a week or two, think it over, and if the mood is there to regroup and reorganise our strategy, so be it, I`ll be the first one to the starting blocks, In the meantime, it was great to have been a part of this group, and let us hope that our common goal of legalisaion will soon arrive, along with some humanity and dignity.
Every member of the ILIR, from wing to wing and top to bottom, was tremendous. Thanks, Everyone.
Seamus.

No Contest said...

They don't make a siginificant contribution to the US economy.

Anonymous said...

Dont expect much from the Democratic Party.Have we ever seen such a bunch of wimps.
The only bill they vote for right now is one thats going no where.

Anonymous said...

Can anyone tell me why there is such hate by GOP and heartland democrates towards white Europens who speak english. They are the only people who are affected by failing to pass this bill. South Americans come by land without passports so they come and go as they please great job FOOLS

Barry said...

"I think the undocumented Irish should be making contingency plans to move back to Ireland..."

Gee, Irish illegals in America should make plans to like, follow the law? That's the first sensible thing I've read on this site. Get this straight: We Americans may drink green beer and rub the bellies of leprechauns on March 17, but most of us despise illegal aliens period, whether you're Mexican, Irish, or whatever.

"I am saddened to see how the Irish have lost their political power."

Oh dear, how sad, you're no longer able to win at the ethnic grievances game and have to suffer along with the other white folk. Pity.

"We are not looked on with the same respect and kindness that we were a couple of decades ago by Americans. The undocumented Irish are seen as just as much a part of the problem as the Mexicans."

Damn straight. What he said.

"It is with a heavy heart that I am now, for the first time in 20 years, considering leaving America. I feel as unwanted as my undocumented brothers and sisters."

Oh boo fucking hoo. If you do decide to leave, don't let the door hit your ass on the way out.

"Anyway, there is always Australia....."

Indeed! Australia's beautiful, they don't let their citizens own guns, and there's universal health insurance! Australia's a paradise, I'd highly recommend it to you and all of your illegal alien friends.

"John McKane" said: "James Webb from Virgina is a senator who claim Scoth Irish desent he knifed us in the back with the senate vote. He has a book out call Born Fighting about Scoth Irish we should have a boycot of it and burn any copys if you have it."

First off, Webb's "Born Fighting" is a GREAT book! Second, as--like Webb--a descendant of, on one side of my family, Scots-Irish, I shouldn't have to point out to you Irish lads & lasses that my ancestors (and Webb's) were loyal to the Crown (until they came here), and our cousins who stayed behind are more Ian Paisley than Gerry Adams, if you get my drift.

In any case, the key to understanding the feeling of Webb (and me) is that our identity as Americans supercedes any loyalty to our roots in "the old country", which is to say, as an atheist Protestant American, I'd extend my hand of help to a Latin-mass attending American Roman Catholic before I'd lift a finger for an Ulster Protestant who's a citizen of the UK.

Illegals go home!

Sean said...

Ahh, what's the term for one that piggybacks on the efforts of a wetback?

Scofflaw Irish?

¡Adios amigos!

Anonymous said...

Barry your dead right I would love all the Illegals to go home. You have an ageing population too old to work.And a school system were the kids cant read or write when they finish school . I only wish they would all go and let your enecomy crash just so people like you ,who are born way before there time to smart for this century can see what will happen
Nietzsche

Anonymous said...

This is the guy that fucked us all up. steve elliott. This is the website grassfire.org we need to shut down everthing for a week everyone stop working. WE MUST DO SOMETHING FAST

Concerned said...

Barry, the "American", I hope your ancestors arrived on Plymouth Rock. Even if they did, hate to break it to you, you are an immigrant too. Albeit you are not an undocumented one. I am sure your ancestors would be very proud of your position on immigration. Do yourself a favor and examine how difficult it is become legal when all that is available is the diversity visa program (50,000 visa distributed annually worldwide). Not that you care but Ireland receives less than 200 visas per year from this program. I am sure your response is that is 200 too many. Irish Americans like you Barry are few and far between. Good thing. Up the Irish.

Anonymous said...

This is the man that finished us. steve elliott you can see how he did it here grassfire.org its not pretty. PS AND DONT FORGET LOU DOBBS. FREEDOM FOR ALL

no contest said...

You beat yourselves.

Anonymous said...

Barry, you have done yourself proud. It is Americans like you that are ruining the reputation of this great country worldwide. There was a time when the people of the world looked on America with awe and dreamed of coming here and living the dream.
That strong reputation was created by immigrants, and carried on by their sons and daughters. Unfortunately by the third and fourth generation, Americans are not as cognizant of the sacrifice these immigrants made. They worked often in less than glamorous jobs, so their children could have what they did not have. They served proudly when called to defend their adopted country. How many solders serving in our armed forces today are immigrants or first generation Americans? Check it out.
Instead of deporting hard working undocumented immigrants, it is a pity you can't be asked to leave.

But what country would want an ignorant, self-serving, foul-mouthed, loud-mouthed, 'Atheist-Protestant' .......
Wow! I just realized….. you are living in it.
God Bless America!