Misgivings but pragmatism prevails on President Trump


The shock election of Donald Trump has left our politicians struggling to find a ‘position’

The shock election of Donald Trump has left our politicians struggling to find a ‘position’

DONALD Trump’s election as the 45th US President has surprised many, not least our local elected representatives here in Fermanagh. 


While a Hillary Clinton victory and the hope of her continued commitment to the North was anticipated, it remains to be seen what interest, if any, the new Trump administration will take in business and political affairs here. 

Mrs Clinton and the former US president Bill have enjoyed a special relationship with Ireland spanning two decades, encouraging hope and reconciliation during crucial times in the Peace Process. This includes close ties with Co Fermanagh, where the Clinton Peace Centre in Enniskillen was opened by Mr Clinton in 2002. 

Questions are now being asked about whether or not the latest incumbent of the White House will regard Northern Ireland as a priority. 

In welcoming President-elect Trump’s appointment, the First Minister, Arlene Foster stressed the importance of Northern Ireland’s “strong historical, economic and political ties to the United States”.

“Northern Ireland has developed a mutually beneficial relationship with the United States and I look forward to working with Donald Trump’s administration to continue this. As our largest inward investor the United States plays a massive role in our economic progress.”

Tom Elliott MP said most people will be very pleased to move on following the end of a long and fractious presidential campaign.

“Mr Trump and his team need to quickly get on with running America and everyone must try and make the most of it. There is little point in grandstanding over who was elected or not. The American people have spoken and that democracy has to be respected, whether we like the outcome or not.”


The SDLP’s Richie McPhillips added: “Trump’s win was met with major concern on social media and I would share those various concerns, especially around his protectionism policies and how they will impact jobs in the North. I do however accept the fact that the people of America have spoken and we must respect that regardless of our own personal views.”

Sinn Fein’s Sean Lynch told the Herald that the shock result proved to be “another Brexit moment”. 

“The people have voted and Trump is now their leader, which we have to deal with. In terms of his relationship with the North, we’ll just have to wait and see but we must take the opportunity to go over and influence in order to put the importance of the Peace Process on the American agenda. Mr Trump has said many things that I would disagree with and abhor but we’ll have to work with him as best we can.”     

Meanwhile, Tanya Jones of the Fermanagh and South Tyrone Green Party expressed deep concern at Mr Trump’s selection: 

“This is heartbreaking news not only for the American people but for all of us. Both the tone and the content of Trump’s election campaign were breathtakingly offensive: racist, misogynist and uninformed about all the issues that matter most. If a Trump presidency follows this pattern, the consequences will be devastating.” 


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