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Trump Praises Irish 'Fight' at White House Ceremony
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By Henry C. Jackson | 03/16/17 07:51 PM EDT

President Donald Trump credited the fighting spirit of the Irish people with helping to build the United States during a St. Patrick's Day reception with the Irish prime minister on Thursday.

"I know a lot about the Irish. They fight. They're tough," Trump said.

In praising the close ties between the U.S. and Ireland Trump credited the Irish people with making the country more prosperous.

"They contributed mightily to America's innovation and America's prosperity," he said. "It's inspiring and really helped a relatively young nation."

Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny thanked Trump for the warm reception and said he was grateful for the United States' leadership, saying he was "proud to be here for a new era." He said he and Trump had a "first class" meeting.

"The job you hold is exceptionally demanding and exceptionally difficult," Kenny said.