Irish-Catholic organization says McCain’s Irish joke was ‘an insult to a whole nationality.’

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"Irish-Catholic organization says McCain’s Irish joke was ‘an insult to a whole nationality.’"

During a town hall in Scranton, PA on Monday, Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) declared that “there’s only one ethnic joke that can be told in American politics and that’s Irish jokes.” McCain then preceded to tell a joke about drunk Irish twins. Watch it:

Politico’s Ben Smith reports today that Seamus Boyle, the president of the Ancient Order of Hibernians, has taken McCain to task in a public letter:

It was a great meeting but when you began your speech with a joke about the Irish, I and many of our fellow Irish Americans in the Ancient Order of Hibernians, were shocked. It was really an insult to a whole nationality to be stereotyped as drunks. The Irish are a jovial people who enjoy life, work hard, help the needy, support our community and our country yet get depicted as drunkards and partiers. As you stated in your speech yesterday the Irish have a great education and work ethic. Senator, I was not the only one offended and I received numerous complaints from a variety of people throughout Pennsylvania and other parts of the country. On behalf of these people, the Ancient Order of Hibernians and myself and my family, I wish you would refrain from demeaning the Irish or any other ethnic group by telling such jokes in the future. I think an apology is in order to those millions of Irish in the United States who were offended by your joke.

Update

Earlier this week, Max Bergmann noted that McCain was against U.S. involvement in the Northern Ireland peace process.

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