As news of the end of the DUP’s boycott of Stormont was shared, American political leaders reflected on the opportunity and the historic nature of the development.
United State Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer of NY said, “(I am) pleased to hear the DUP is moving past its long blockade and will allow the rightfully elected representatives in Northern Ireland to stand up the Assembly & power-sharing executive.
“I look forward to Sinn Féin’s Michelle O’Neill making history as the first nationalist First Minister.”
Congressman Richie Neal of Massachusetts said, “When the US helped broker the Good Friday Agreement, it was to ensure that all communities had a voice in the pursuit of peace and prosperity.
“With the restoration of power-sharing on the horizon, the people are the winners. Their voices will be heard once again.”
Representative Bill Keating said that he was “…reassured to hear the DUP has agreed to reenter government in Northern Ireland. A functioning Assembly & Executive are key components of the Good Friday Agreement & I firmly believe a reconstituted government will bring greater economic prosperity to the region & the people of NI.”
Former Congressman Bruce Morrison (D-CT), co-chair of The Ad-Hoc Committee to Protect the Good Friday Agreement, stated, “The Ad Hoc Committee welcomes the DUP decision to return to Stormont. The devolved assembly is a key part of the Good Friday Agreement, and it must function at all times to be effective. We hope that this is the beginning of a successful period of Stormont governance through which the challenges faced by the people of Northern Ireland will be constructively addressed.”
Former Congressman Jim Walsh (R-NY), co-chair of the Ad Hoc Committee, praised the decision to stand up the Northern Ireland Executive, saying, “We are more than pleased for the people of Northern Ireland that Stormont is to be restored. Restoring the Executive should be the first step in fully implementing all the strands of the GFA/Belfast Agreement. We will be meeting with the House of Commons Committee on Northern Ireland next week and we look forward to meeting with the Northern Ireland Secretary of State Christopher Heaton-Harris again who has been tenacious in getting the deal done.”