20,000 signatures and rising: Enda Kenny urged to boycott USA visit

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Over 20,000 people have signed an online petition urging Taoiseach, Enda Kenny, to boycott the annual St Patrick's Day visit to the United States.

Reacting to President Trump's executive order which prevents immigrants from seven Muslim countries from entering the United States, thousands of Irish people have added their names to the campaign.

Shared on Uplift over the weekend, the Not In My Name petition has gained a considerable amount of traction  – something which has surprised the campaign's director Siobhán O' Donoghue.

"It’s rare we see petitions grow this quickly and gather this much momentum on social media in such a short space of time," she acknowledged.

Elaborating on the fervour behind the campaign, Siobhán explained that its popularity stems from the Irish public's desire to see their leader challenge the ideals of the US president.

"This shows that people in Ireland are disgusted by the behaviour of Donald Trump since he became president nine days ago, and want to see Enda Kenny show real leadership and courage in the face of such blatant racism and fascism on the part of Donald Trump," she said.

Many of those who signed the petition also made the decision to share their reasons with those visiting the website.

"I wasn't going to sign cause I could see how pragmatic politics needs to protect jobs etc. But seeing people with green cards turned away today? Sure there's no appeasing him, he could turn on Ireland for no reason," wrote one.

"So there's no reason to collude with the madness. 'stand for something or you'll fall for anything Ireland," they added.

Twitter is currently awash with similar sentiments from the public, with one social media user writing: "Don't meet @realDonaldTrump & think you're representing Irish people."

"I'm a constituent, and I want @EndaKennyTD to know that I do not support the St. Patrick's visit to the USA #notinmyname," added another.

For more than two decades, Taoisigh have visited the White House in order to present the American President with a bowl of shamrock.

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