The beginning of the fourth quarter of Obama’s presidency

Posted on by Caitriona Perry

<> on July 18, 2014 in Washington, DC.

By RTÉ Washington Correspondent Caitríona Perry

Interesting things happen in the fourth quarter, quipped US President Barack Obama at his end of year press conference, as his own presidency heads into its fourth quarter.

American sports games can often last hours with long periods of inaction allowing for commercial breaks and stocking up on beer and hotdogs. And it is fair to say that his presidency has been criticised for long periods of inaction too. Continue reading

Drinks all round after Democrats Drubbing – Where to now for US politics?

Posted on by Caitriona Perry


By Caitríona Perry, Washington Correspondent

“The American people sent a message … they expect us to focus on their ambitions and not ours … I have a unique responsibility to make this town work … to everyone who voted, I want you to know that I hear you.”

The words US President Obama used to explain the drubbing the Democratic Party took in Tuesday night’s Mid-Term Elections. Continue reading

GOP set for Senate showdown

Posted on by Caitriona Perry


<> on November 3, 2014 in Little Rock, Arkansas.


By Caitríona Perry, Washington Correspondent

The New York Times says 70%, the Huffington Post says 74%, the Washington Post says 70% too…all agree that the Grand Ole Party – the Republicans – will more than likely take the Senate following today’s mid-term elections.

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History moving sideways – 50 years after the Civil Rights Act

Posted on by Caitriona Perry


By Caitriona Perry, Washington Correspondent

As he arrived into the hall at the Lyndon B Johnson Library in Texas last week, Barack Obama apologised for being a little late.

The delay, he said, was caused by his wife Michelle playing him a tape of Lady Bird Johnson critiquing her husband’s presidential performance.

Nothing has changed in 50 years, joked Obama. But of course everything has changed. Continue reading

Obamacare Enrolment Deadline

Posted on by Caitriona Perry


“Is there anything else I can help you with today Ma’am?” It’s not the polite customer service agent’s fault, but no, after a second 45-minute phone call, and the magic words “you are now enrolled”, there’s nothing else you can do for me.

After four phone calls, and several hours spent online, I’d finally been cleared to buy a health care insurance policy…not a free one, or a subsidised one, but one I would pay for myself.  The bureaucracy involved to willingly part with your own money – for something you hope never to have to use – was mind-boggling.

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In the clink …

Posted on by Richard Downes

By Washington Correspondent Richard Downes

Dr Kermit Gosnell’s House of Horrors was well-known to the local community of West Philadelphia.

His reputation was as sleazy as it comes. He was the “go-to” doctor if you wanted a late term illegal abortion. But you had to pay cash … and lots of it. This was sketchy but not cheap. Continue reading

Abortion doctor in the dock

Posted on by Richard Downes

Some readers may find the contents of this blog disturbing

By Richard Downes in Philadelphia

The courtroom in Philadelphia is jammed, with standing room only at key times. But strangely the case has not ignited the imagination of the public or the big networks.

CNN isn’t there. Nor is ABC or CBS. Just little old RTÉ. When you spend some time in the courtroom, you quickly get to understand why.

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The longest night

Posted on by Ray Donoghue

In his final blog from Washington DC,  RTÉ News Deputy Foreign Editor Anthony Murnane reflects on the events of voting day and looks ahead to the second term for President Barack Obama.

And so the ‘longest night’ comes to an end.

It was a 24 hour period that saw 130m Americans queue, some for as long as three hours, to exercise their right to vote.

A time frame that saw the polls close and the count begin. Then the time came for the electorate and political junkies to settle in for the night and watch the election results unfold.

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World’s media descend on US capital

Posted on by Ray Donoghue

Anthony Murnane, Deputy Foreign Editor, is in Washington where he assesses the situation facing the country’s 133 million likely voters on Election Day.

Washington is a bustling city around election time. The world’s media has descended in ‘the Nation’s Capital’ even though the candidates for the White House are usually in another place, their home states watching and waiting for the result.

We congregate on rooftops overlooking the White House where banks of cameras are trained on presenters and reporters as they bring the latest news of the election to the country and the world.

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Virginia crucial to Romney’s battle plan

Posted on by Ray Donoghue

Mitt Romney on the campaign trail with wife, Ann

By Robert Shortt in Virginia

It’s quiet, cold and the sun is shining. Washington DC is eerily calm.

It’s a professional city, full of ambitious people caught up in the cut and thrust of politics and all of its attendant courtiers in the lobbying and policy worlds.

But the two tribes of American politics have migrated to the seven or so battleground states where this closest of elections has been fought.

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