Platform for President

Why Be a Small Country When We Are Already a Great Nation?

A chara,

My name is Peter Casey and I am announcing my candidacy for President of this great country, and I need your support.

Some of you may know me from my work here and abroad. I have started and conducted business on every continent except Antarctica. I was born in Derry, and have lived all around the world- in Ireland, Australia and the United States. I know from first-hand experience how important being “Irish” is to the expatriates everywhere, and I am certain we can tap into the powerful pride that all the Irish living abroad feel every day.

Extending the influence of Ireland around the globe

I have discovered that regardless where you go, Ireland is an important part of the lives of the Irish everywhere. Ireland, you see, extends far beyond its borders and, even though millions are citizens of other countries, they still proudly identify themselves foremost as being “Irish”. The office of the President has, rightly in my opinion, many restrictions on its powers. However, I am confident we can create a more active and effective presidency by working in tandem with the government of the day to strengthen the bonds with all our Irish brothers and sisters internationally. Leading a movement to do that will be an emphasis of my platform. There are over 75-million people worldwide who identify themselves as “Irish” with 40-million Irish in the United States alone, and over a third of all Australians identify as Irish too. But beyond being Irish, these people are among the leaders in government, business, education and science. We must strengthen the global impact of the entire Irish community that cherishes “being Irish” and wants to maintain and extend its Irish roots. For Ireland to harness this worldwide Irish power, we must reach out and inspire and do everything possible to make the worldwide Irish community a stronger and more consolidated lobby. The implementation of a connected diaspora program would have many economic and social benefits for our country.

Establish an Irish Birthright Program

As President, I would make an Irish Birthright programme one of my key priorities. This would encourage Irish people living abroad to send their children to Ireland to help them better understand their Irish heritage. Of course, this would also be a major boast to tourism. I have contacts with many of the world’s leading Irish business people and I am confident I can persuade many of them to contribute both financially and with guidance and influence.

Promote Ireland and Education on the Global Stage

Flowing from this initiative would be a programme to all Irish universities to partner with more universities abroad, developing and implementing Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) programmes, so students overseas could come to Ireland and get credit for part of their degree here. I have already arranged for Chandra, the CEO of the largest company in India, Tata Sons, to come to Ireland to meet with the previous Taoiseach, Enda Kenny, and Ministers Bruton and Nash to discuss how Ireland could partner with Tata to establish a centre of excellence in Ireland to promote MOOCs globally.

MOOCs is the future of education and Ireland needs to be at the forefront of this initiative. MOOCs is going to do to education what iTunes has done to music.

We used to be the land of Saints and Scholars. And my goal is to help us try and reclaim our title.

I am proud to be a citizen of this great country. Proud of how much we have achieved and the affection and esteem we are embraced with by the rest of the world. I have been lucky to have been fortunate in my business life and I now want to give back to this country that has given so much to me and my family.

Whilst fully understanding the constitutional limits of the office of President, I am passionate and committed to making this Presidency an active one; one that can do far more than just meet and greet. I want to use the office to reach out and open doors so the people of Ireland are connected to the greatest and brightest people of the world– their fellow Irish.

I also vow not to take a salary, instead I will donate the €27,000 monthly pay cheque to a different County Council every month, for the local councillors to decide deserving charities or community projects to support. Community representatives and Councillors would be invited each month to the Áras to receive the contribution directly from the President.

I believe in the maxim which was said by Tip O’Neill that ‘All politics is local’, I hope by doing this that I can bring the Irish Presidency closer to the needs and concerns of the people by regularly meeting with local Councils and citizens in this way.

To demonstrate the seriousness of my intent, I recently stepped down as CEO of my company Claddagh Resources. Two years ago, my wife Helen and I sold our home in Atlanta, and are in the process of moving back to our home in Donegal. The only home we own.

I would be grateful for any support you can give me in the coming weeks and assure you that I will attack this role with the same energy and dedication that I have put into all the businesses I have been involved with.

If you feel you would like to be part of my campaign, please contact me as I would greatly appreciate your support.

Is mise le meas,

Peter Casey

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