Irish Examiner View: Biden support for an open border is reassuring

Irish Examiner View: Biden support for an open border is reassuring

President-elect Joe Biden. PIcture: AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster

If anyone was in any doubt about the US re-engaging with Irish politics, they should be reassured by the remarks of President-elect Joe Biden in which he stressed the importance of maintaining an open border in Ireland after Brexit.

Speaking to RTÉ’s Washington Correspondent Brian O’Donovan, he said: "I've talked with the British prime minister, I've talked with the Taoiseach, I've talked with others such as the French.

"The idea of having the border north and south once again being closed, it's just not right, we have got to keep the border open.

His support for Ireland on Brexit is nothing new. 

In September, amid concerns over Boris Johnson’s Internal Market Bill which attempts to override the Northern Ireland protocol, Mr Biden took to Twitter.

We can't allow the Good Friday Agreement that brought peace to Northern Ireland to become a casualty of Brexit.

He also warned the Johnson government that any trade deal between the US and UK must be contingent upon respect for the Agreement and preventing the return of a hard border.

The importance of a strong supporter of Ireland in the Oval Office cannot be overstated.

It was Ronald Reagan who persuaded Margaret Thatcher to sign the Anglo Irish Agreement in 1985. It was Bill Clinton’s influence and Senator George Mitchell’s hard graft that got the Good Friday Agreement over the line. 

Boris Johnson, please note.

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