Joe Biden Closes Ireland Visit With Perfect Music Choice And Raucous Crowd

A fitting anthem played before the U.S. president addressed the 27,000 who gathered for the concluding event of his overseas trip.

Joe Biden might’ve just found his theme song for the 2024 election.

The U.S. president concluded his trip to Ireland this week with a speech at St. Muredach’s Cathedral, and he arrived at the Ballina landmark on Friday with the perfect entrance music: “I’m Shipping Up to Boston” by American Celtic punk band Dropkick Murphys.

The song’s iconic bagpipes blared through the air as Biden walked onstage and raucous onlookers hoisted Irish and American flags. He opened with a reference to the country’s former President Mary Robinson, who reportedly told him about the Irish tradition of putting a light in the window to guide strangers traveling at night.

“Mary, I see the light,” he said.

Around 27,000 people gathered to hear Biden speak outside St. Muredach’s, which was built with some bricks made by Biden’s great-great-great grandfather. Many in the crowd, which was nearly double the size of Ballina’s entire population, had reportedly driven hours to see him.

The Irish American politician visited numerous sites and landmarks tied to his family lineage during the trip, though the visit’s primary purpose regarded the 25th anniversary of the Good Friday Agreement, which declared a formal end to the sectarian violence that had plagued Ireland for decades prior.

Biden naturally commented on his Irish heritage during his speech, saying the country is not merely part of his personal family history but part of his “soul.”

“Being here does feel ... like coming home,” said Biden. “It really does.”

Aside from making for a grand entrance, the choice of “I’m Shipping Up to Boston” might have had an added layer of meaning for the president.

At a show in Pennsylvania last year, Dropkick Murphys frontman Ken Casey referred to Biden’s predecessor, Donald Trump, as a “swindler.”

“You’re being duped by the greatest swindler in the history of the world,” Casey told a crowd in September. “You’re being duped by a bunch of grifters and billionaires who don’t give a shit about you or your family.”

It’s unclear whether Biden was aware of that incident, but the president has confirmed that he intends on running for reelection and may thus face off against Trump for a second time.

Biden’s approval rating back home sits at just 43%, yet reactions online indicated a favorable reception to this week’s “rock star” like appearance in Ballina.

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