JOE BIDEN is planning a visit to Ireland very soon – but only if he beats Donald Trump in the upcoming US Presidential elections.
The 77-year-old is proud of his strong Irish roots and previously visited the Emerald Isle in 2016, while serving as Vice-President to Barack Obama.
He could be heading back in a matter of months too, according to an exclusive Irish Mirror interview with his cousin Laurita Blewitt.
Biden reportedly confided in her that: “My priority as President will be to come to Ireland.”
The Democratic candidate is certainly well-positioned to make good on his promise, with Biden comfortably ahead of the under-fire President Trump in the latest opinion polls.
According to Blewitt, a donor relations manager with the Mayo Roscommon Hospice Foundation, Biden “has a great love for Ireland”.
“He was reared very much with Irish roots and he’s very much Irish at heart,” she told the Irish Mirror.
Blewitt spent a couple of weeks on the campaign trail with Biden a few months back before the Covid-19 pandemic forced her to head home – though not before the 77-year-old Democrat made a promise.
“What he told me when I was leaving was, ‘My priority is to get to Ireland,” she said.
While she may be far from impartial, she believes Biden could help unite the country by drawing on the experience of the Irish in America.
“He quotes a lot of Irish poets and Irish writers when he speaks" she said, recalling how during one rally "he spoke about how the Irish were treated when they left Ireland and how he really wants to represent the minority in America."
“He knows how difficult and he knows the challenges they faced because he’s seen how Irish people were treated," Blewitt added.
“So, he’s very much in touch with his Irish roots and his Irish family.”
Prior to his last trip to the Emerald Isle, Biden wrote a letter explaining why coming back to Ireland meant so much to him.
"Over the course of my life, I’ve been a lot of places. I’ve traveled all around the world – more than a million miles on Air Force Two alone. I’ve been honoured to have held a lot of titles. But I have always been and will always be the son of Kitty Finnegan," he wrote.
"The grandson of Geraldine Finnegan from St. Paul’s Parish in Scranton; a proud descendant of the Finnegans of Ireland’s County Louth. The great-grandson of a man named Edward Francis Blewitt, whose roots stem from Ballina, a small town in Ireland’s County Mayo – sister city to my hometown in Scranton, Pennsylvania. An engineer with a poet’s heart."
"As Americans, we all hail from many homes. Somewhere along the line, someone in our lineage arrived on our shores, filled with hope. We are blessed to experience that simultaneous pride in where we’ve found ourselves, while never forgetting our roots."