The U.S. Capitol’s St. Patrick’s Day rituals did not bring President Donald Trump any luck this year.
On St. Patrick’s Day eve, Trump was put in an awkward position when Ireland’s Prime Minister Enda Kenny stood beside him and subtly called out his immigration policy in front of everyone.
After Trump discussed the country’s “high levels of optimism” and vowed America would remain a loyal friend to Ireland,he introduced Kenny, who explained the tradition of gathering at the White House every year to honor Ireland’s patron saint.
Then he packed the punch. “He too, of course, was an immigrant,” Kenny said. “And though he is of course the patron saint of Ireland, for many people around the globe he is also a symbol of the patron of immigrants.”
For a brief moment, it appeared the two leaders might clash as hard as their green striped and polka dotted ties.
Instead, Trump gave Kenny some serious side eye as he continued: “Ireland came to America because, deprived of liberty, deprived of opportunity, of safety, of even food itself, the Irish believed, four decades before Lady Liberty lifted her lamp, we were the wretched refuse on the teeming shore.
“We believed in the shelter of America in the compassion of America, in the opportunity of America. We came and we became Americans.”
At the Friends of Ireland Luncheon on Thursday, Kenny also addressed Trump’s plans to remove illegal immigrants from the United States in a more direct way.
“Id just like to say in finality, this is what I said to your predecessor on a number of occasions: We would like this to be sorted.It would remove a burden of so many people that they can stand out in the light and say, now I am free to contribute to America as I know I can.And thats what people want,” Kenny said.
“There are millions out there who want to play their part for America if you like, who want to make America great,” he said, using Trump’s own campaign slogan as the ultimate troll. “Heard it before? Heard that before?” Kenny said over laughter and applause.
Sick burn, Kenny. Sick. Burn.