The Congressional delegation to Ireland this year included far more heavy hitters on the issues such as immigration than in times past.

In the old days it was heavily Irish American and Northern Ireland oriented, with friends of Ireland members predominating.

This time Velasquez and Chicago congressman Luis Gutierrez certainly left a very different impression. Gutierrez is a key figure on the immigration issue, extremely close to Obama and perhaps the person he listens to most outside his inner circle on the question.

No doubt the issue was raised at the highest levels by the Irish government during their meetings with the congressional delegation. One can only hope that action will follow.