Category: Archive

Mitchell up to par for new Irish gig

February 16, 2011

By Staff Reporter

By Susan Falvella Garraty

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The headline in the Washington Post Style Section read "George Mitchell: Duffer Diplomacy? Is this the peace divot-end?" It seems that besides brokering the Good Friday accord and endearing himself to an island, offers have been pouring in from all over Ireland for the former Senate majority leader.

Now, Mitchell has been selected to the board chairman of the Irish National Golf Club Ltd. "We couldn’t be happier, he said ‘yes,’ " reports the organization’s CEO, Doug Barton, from his office outside of Washington, D.C.

Washington D.C.? It seems the developers are Landmark National an American company and is developing the $20 million course in Doonbeg, Co. Clare, through an Irish subsidiary.

This point has been picked up by some environmental groups in Ireland who oppose the development of the area, which has beautiful views and is slated to include three golf courses, a hotel, conference center, and vacation homes (including one for Mitchell).

"He brings us great status and great credibility," Barton said of Mitchell, who is known more for his ground strokes on the tennis court than for his shots out of a bunker.

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And that familiar face to the peace process may now again become more prominent here as well. If the now impeached President Clinton has to face a trial in the Senate, Mitchell likely work on his behalf.

White House Chief of Staff John Podesta has said that throughout the impeachment battle, Mitchell has counseled Clinton. He expects Senator Mitchell to continue in either a "formal or informal role" as the battle moves to either a censure or trial.

Senator Mitchell, who will spend the holidays in Florida with his family, was not available this week, but it’s already evident that his staff is a bit overwhelmed. When a reporter called his office, the response was, "This isn’t about impeachment, is it?"

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