Irish cousin of Mike Pence praises Donald Trump’s visit to Doonbeg

An Irish relative of US vice president Mike Pence has praised the visit of Donald Trump to his home village.

Hugh McNally, who welcomed the US president’s sons Eric and Donald Jnr to his pub in Doonbeg, Co Clare, earlier this week, said his family links to the Pence family remain “strong”.

Mr McNally, who owns Morrisey’s pub, is a distant cousin of Mr Pence. His great-grandmother and Mr Pence’s great-grandmother were sisters.

Mr Pence said his great-grandparents grew up in Doonbeg and earlier this week he spoke briefly about Mr McNally as the president was visiting the village, which is home to his Irish golf resort.

Mr Pence also described Doonbeg as “a two-street town”.

Mr McNally said the Pence family visits regularly, but Mr Pence himself has not visited since becoming vice president.

“He last came over in 2014 with his whole family who were retracing their Irish heritage,” he said.

“They spent a few nights in the resort then a few months after that he became vice president.

“We remain in good contact. His mother called me during the week to wish us all well with the president’s visit. She said she hopes we enjoy it.

“It’s nice and they like to stay in contact, that’s what it’s all about.

“We’ve got such a strong connection to the country and that’s what it means to them and us too. We will keep that connection strong.

“When something happens over here they are anxious to find out about it and they want to include us.”

Speaking about Eric and Donald Jnr’s pub crawl on Wednesday night, he said: “It was amazing. They’ve been in half a dozen times during previous visits.

“They are great and every time they do come over they make a point of coming to visit the people and ask how things are. We really appreciate it all.”

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