There were no doubt sighs of relief all around at 3.15pm this afternoon when Air Force One took off from Shannon Airport.

From a security and organisational perspective the visit of President Donald Trump to Ireland had gone well.

There are mixed views however about the substance of the trip.

Critics of Donald Trump would claim that the visit was just an opportunity for the US president to play golf at his Doonbeg resort.

Others would argue that it was about far more than that. 

It was a chance to celebrate US-Irish relations and provided an opportunity for Irish officials to speak directly with the most powerful administration in the world.

President Trump’s visit to Ireland also highlighted the fact that he is a polarising figure. 

I see this regularly in the US. In the media, in Congress and on the streets, you encounter a level of admiration from his staunch supporters matched only by the level of distain from his detractors. 

We saw that replicated in Ireland this week. 

Locals in Doonbeg celebrated his arrival while protestors gathered in Shannon and Dublin. 

It’s the kind of contrast that we’ll see again and again in the US in the coming months as Donald Trump campaigns for re-election.