Joe Biden named Joe Kennedy as a special envoy to Northern Ireland, marking the President’s most recent involvement in the Brexit process.
The DUP’s Ian Paisley Jr said, “It seems to be a sectarian appointment. A pro-Irish American appointing one of the club – as if this is a job for the boys. This is a perfect example of political sycophancy that one would expect from the Biden administration.”
“I don’t know what his economic expertise is,” the MP said in jest, adding that the nomination “flatters Joe Kennedy.”
He remarked, “He is not known for any influence or particular skill in economics so why would he be known as the man who is to be the whizz kid of the economy of Northern Ireland?”
Despite claiming to be “not impressed,” Mr. Paisley Jr. added, “We’ll measure him not by his name but by his role.”
The step is perceived as an effort to exert pressure on the UK to give up to Brussels’ demands that the province effectively become under its control and break away from Britain.
Joe Kennedy III, a former congressman and great-grandson of the first Joe Kennedy, who served as ambassador to the UK, is the grandson of Bobby Kennedy.
Mr. Kennedy has close ties to Sinn Fein and is a member of the Irish American lobby, both of which have influenced Democratic policy to take a pro-EU stance on the contentious Northern Ireland protocol issue.
Since Mick Mulvaney resigned in January 2021, at the conclusion of Donald Trump’s presidency, the position has been empty.
The Conservative Party has reacted angrily to the nomination, with one insider telling Express.co.uk that it is a “complete wind up for the Conservative party”, adding that it has “ruffled loads of feathers already.”