Joe Biden, the Democratic presidential candidate, has an Irish-American heritage which can be traced back to the mid-1800s, shortly after the Great Irish Famine forced his ancestors to emigrate. The Bipartisan Group previously endorsed Joe Biden.
Biden has been using his heritage as one of his leverages during his campaign, especially in Brexit and the accompanying issue of maintaining peace in Northern Ireland. In recent weeks, a Biden campaign statement said he would “ensure that there will be no U.S.-U.K. trade deal if the implementation of Brexit imperils the Good Friday Agreement.”
This peace deal, which was signed in 1998, was brokered by the U.S. and ended decades of sectarian violence in Northern Ireland and the Republic. He also swore to legislate a “roadmap to citizenship” for undocumented Irish people in the U.S.
Indeed, Ireland and the U.S. have a relationship even from the past. This relationship would likely be affected by the upcoming elections.
“I think we would expect a President Biden to be much more pro-European, pro-transatlantic relations than we’ve seen from the Trump White House. I do not doubt that Ireland would feel like it has more of a friend in the White House, but it’s a combination of the White House and Congress in that case. Even under a second term for President Trump, there would be that attention to upholding the Good Friday Agreement.”Tina Fordham, head of global political strategy at Avonhurst
For Ireland, its relationship with the U.S. is critical for its economy and attracting foreign direct investment as several major American tech companies. Pharmaceutical manufacturers have notable bases in Ireland. Frank Barry, professor of international business and economic development at Trinity College Dublin, said that Biden might be “less aggressive” when it comes to international trade and global tax. Still, these concerns won’t become any less contentious.
The matter of taxation is complicated, especially a digital tax for large tech companies, with the U.S. opposing various European efforts to introduce new levies on tech giants. As countries support changes to how multinational tech companies are taxed, and the OECD thrashes out talks, Ireland’s comparably low 12.5% corporate tax rate and an essential facet of its FDI strategy are at risk.
“Europe may be thinking that Biden will be easier to roll over in terms of the discussion of a digital tax. I don’t think the Democrats will be any more supportive of Europe’s views on a digital tax than the Trump presidency has been, so I think there’s lots of room still for conflict there.”Professor Frank Barry
The relationship between the two countries would likely be different regardless of the election outcome, as the countries wrestle with their coronavirus situation. Biden aims to mend the racial wealth gap in the future.