Former US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has said that if she were to run for the office of US president, she would relish the campaign battle.
Speaking to RTÉ's Six One News, she said she believed it would make a difference to ordinary women in the United States to have a woman in the office of president.
She said that Ireland has had two women Presidents, both of whom were very distinguished and had sent a strong message about the values of Irish society.
Forty-nine countries have had a woman as head of state or head of government, she said, and she believed it is symbolic in the same way that a barrier had been broken with the election of Barack Obama.
She also said the US has a great deal of concern about what is happening in Northern Ireland and will remain helpful in any way that would be appropriate.