Close to 100 Irish supporters of Hillary Clinton attended a fundraiser for her in Dublin on Friday night.
Those present were told it was time to “put the hooley back in the White House” by Clinton activist Brian O’Dwyer in a thinly veiled jab at President Obama and his minimal outreach to Irish American organizations.
The delay of almost two years in appointing an ambassador to Ireland has rankled many leading Irish Americans. O’Dwyer referenced the massive outreach during the Clinton era White House to Irish Americans and the many Irish events held at the president’s residence during the two terms of President Clinton.
O’Dwyer told Irish Central that this was the third international fundraiser for Hillary and that it had gone exceptionally well. “We exceeded all expectations.”
The event was held at a posh Raglan Road address in Ballsbridge and the group, which operates under the “Ready for Hillary” umbrella, raised an estimated $50,000.
Lead speaker was O’Dwyer the prominent Irish American lawyer often spoken of as a potential US Ambassador if Hillary was elected president.
Also present was Maurice Buckely head of the US Irish chamber of Commerce and a long time confidant of the Smurfit clan, one of Ireland’s leading business families.
The events was co-hosted by former US residents, lawyer Brian Farren and his wife Linda O’Shea Farren, a former advisor to former Irish Minister for Justice Michael McDowell.
Also present as senior public relations advisor Paul Allen who has worked on Irish issues with the Kennedy family.
Farren told the Irish Times that guests were “an array of people across all ages, a great cross-section of society, which is the point of this kind of gathering: to show the support for Hillary in the hope it will be the push to get her to declare.”
“It’s a lot of Irish people who are American citizens, but aren’t particularly well known, but this is part of the point of this – to get more of a grassroots movement going behind Hillary, that it’s not all celebrities. We want people that are going to vote for her.”
O’Dwyer stated “there is more to elections than money.” He told Journal.ie: “I think that’s what we’re trying to address.”
“It’s a whole new way of campaigning. We’ve already got about 800,000 people signed up to our digital lists and we have about 2.5 million people visiting our website. It’s something we didn’t pay much attention to last time.”
O’Dwyer is a member of the National Finance Committee of Ready for Hillary, a grassroots movement which has raised millions for her campaign.