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From Kennedy to Obama, A Look at Irish-Americans in U.S. Politics From Kennedy to Obama, A Look at Irish-Americans in U.S. Politics

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Congress

From Kennedy to Obama, A Look at Irish-Americans in U.S. Politics

Capitol Hill is marking St. Patrick’s Day on Tuesday with the annual Friends of Ireland lunch hosted by House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio. President Obama and Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny will also attend. Before leaving in the evening on a trip to the Middle East, President Obama will also host a St. Patrick's Day reception in the White House's East Room.

Irish-Americans have long formed an important voting bloc in the United States, and a number of politicians of Irish descent have gained prominence—from the Kennedys to Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt. Here’s a look at the high-profile politicians with Irish ancestry since John F. Kennedy became president in 1961.

 

On a visit to Ireland in 2011, President Obama talked of his Irish roots on his mother's side of the family. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)()

Vice President Joe Biden. (AP Photo/John Heller)

Irish Prime Minister Bertie Ahern, left, presents President George W.Bush with a bowl of shamrocks in 2008. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)()

 

President Clinton and first lady Hillary Rodham Clinton. (AP Photo/Stephan Savoia)

President George H.W. Bush is presented a bowl of shamrocks for St. Patrick's Day in 1990. (AP Photo/Doug Mills)

President Reagan and House Speaker Tip O'Neill. (AP Photo/Scott Stewart)()

 

President Carter. (AP Photo/Ira Schwarz)

John F. Kennedy with green party hat at a pre-St. Patricks Day congressional party in 1960. (AP Photo/Charles Gorry)

Sen. Robert Kennedy with brother, Sen. Edward Kennedy during the St. Patrick's Day Parade in South Boston, March 17, 1968. (AP Photo/J.W. Green)

 

Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y.(right). (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

Sen. Bob Casey, D-Pa. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)()

 

Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

Rep. Carolyn McCarthy, D-N.Y. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Rep. Jim McDermott, D-Wash. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

 

Rep. Jim Moran, D-Va. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)()

Rep. Richard Neal, D-Mass. (right), after a St. Patrick's Day luncheon. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)()

Rep. Tim Murphy, R-Pa. (AP Photo/Lauren Victoria Burke)

 

Rep. John Tierney D-Mass. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola)()

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