President Clinton threw the biggest state dinner of his administration Thursday for Irish President Mary Robinson, and in return she paid him the supreme compliment: She accidentally called him “President Kennedy.”
Robinson’s slip of the tongue seemed appropriate, crowning a lengthy toast to Clinton at an event that could only be described as an Irish-American love-fest on the South Lawn of the White House.
Robinson, who is paying a state visit to the United States, declared that the Irish-U.S. friendship is “stronger than it has ever been.”
The American president, who claims Irish ancestry on his mother’s side, invited nearly 380 people, about double the number that normally attend a state dinner.
Among the crowd were many members of the family of Clinton’s political idol and perhaps the most famous Irish-American, the late President John F. Kennedy.