Mayo deputy Michael Ring is confident that Joe Biden as US President will be back in Ballina, Castlebar and Westport over the term of his office.
In 2016, the people of Mayo came out on to the streets in these towns, in their thousands, to meet and shake hands with Joe Biden as US Vice President.
Deputy Ring told Midwest News that today is a great day for Joe Biden and his family, and for Mayo, and for Ireland.
He described Joe Biden as a gentle and friendly man who never misses a chance to refer to his Irish heritage.
"He now faces a very tough job leading a very divided US and I certainly wish him well with the many challenges ahead of him", deputy Ring stated.
There’s excitement and pride across county Mayo today as Joe Biden is set to become the 46th US President at a scaled-back ceremony in Washington this evening.
US flags are flying high outside the homes of members of the Knockmore based, Blewitt family as they are related to Mr Biden. The family link is through his mother, Jean. Her grandfather Edward Blewitt’s parents travelled from Ballina to the United States during the Famine in the 1840s. The incoming President visited with his Knockmore cousins when he travelled to Mayo as US Vice President in 2016.
The formal US Presidential Inauguration ceremony today has been stripped of its usual pomp, due both to the Covid 19 pandemic, as well as security concerns following the 6 January assault on the US Capitol building by supporters of outgoing President Donald Trump.
Last night at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington Joe Biden led a Remembrance service for the 400,000 Americans who have died with the virus over the last 10 months.
There will only be a small number of attendees present today when Joe Biden will take the oath of office before US Chief Justice John Roberts just after noon (5pm Irish time), placing his hand on an heirloom Bible that has been in the Biden family for more than a century.
His running mate, Kamala Harris will become the first woman, first Black person and first Asian American to serve as vice president after she is sworn in by US Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor.
The support and delight for Joe Biden’s Presidency in Ireland extends well beyond Ballina and county Mayo. The lead organiser of the Irish for Biden Campaign, Paul Allen told Midwest News today that "it’s a great day for Ireland, as Joe Biden a friend of Ireland, takes the helm in the US".