President Biden on Wednesday toured Carlingford Castle in County Louth, Ireland, where his maternal ancestors are from and expressed that it felt like coming home.
From the castle, Biden looked across the water to Warrenpoint, Northern Ireland and the port where his great-great-grandfather Owen Finnegan departed on March 31, 1849, to travel to New York, according to the White House.
“It feels wonderful. Feels like I’m coming home,” Biden said after his tour.
The president was guided through the castle by a local tour guide and was joined on the visit by his cousin Rob Kearney, as well as Micheál Martin, Tánaiste of Ireland, and Claire Cronin, U.S. ambassador to Ireland.
The Carlingford Pipe Band, a four-piece bagpipe and drum ensemble, also played an original piece titled “A Biden Return,” during his tour, according to the White House. The same group wrote “Our Local Joe,” in 2020 for a local parade held in celebration of Biden getting elected president.
Biden, speaking alongside his son Hunter and sister Valerie Biden Owens said, “It’s fine. It’s Ireland,” when asked about the steady rain.
After the tour, he left for Dundalk in County Louth, where he is set to participate in a community gathering before returning to Dublin for the evening.
Biden arrived in Dublin from Belfast earlier on Wednesday before going to County Louth. He met with embassy families and firefighters while in Dublin, alongside Taoiseach Leo Varadkar.
“This is a guy who has become, I don’t want to hurt his reputation politically, but, in addition to us being allies, we’re also friends,” Biden said of the Taoiseach, the Irish equivalent of a prime minister. “This is a good man right here.”
He also greeted the children and thanked embassy employees for their work.
One child asked the president what his key to success is, and Biden replied that if you disagree with someone, not to question their motive. Another child asked him how his dog is doing, and Biden said Commander is doing well and asked what the child’s dog’s name was.
Prior to arriving in Dublin, Biden delivered remarks in Belfast on the Good Friday Agreement and met with British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak.
Source: The Hill