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In pictures: What are Bertie and Brian doing in the Áras?

The boys/former taoisigh are back in town for a ‘thank you’ reception by President McAleese for her Council of State.

FORMER TAOISIGH BERTIE Ahern and Brian Cowen made a surprise visit to Áras an Uachtaráin today for a ‘thank you’ reception President Mary McAleese held for former members of her Council of State.

Well, it was a surprise for us because we briefly forgot that Ahern and Cowen are both automatically members of the Council of State because they are former taoisigh. All former taoisigh, presidents and chief justices get to sit on the council if they are “able and willing to act”. There is no salary or stipend for sitting on the Council of State, which is an advisory body to the President of Ireland.

Former president Mary Robinson was also at the Áras today for that reason:

In pictures: What are Bertie and Brian doing in the Áras?
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  • Áras reception

    Bertie Ahern with former SDLP leader John Hume stand beside a bust of former President and Taoiseach Eamon De Valera at Aras an Uachtarain.
  • Áras reception

    Bertie Ahern and John Hume
  • Áras reception

    Bertie Ahern and John Hume
  • Áras reception

    Former taoiseach Brian Cowen with President Mary McAleese and her husband Martin today.
  • Áras reception

    Senator Martin McAleese, Brian Cowen and President McAleese
  • Áras reception

    Former taoiseach Albert Reynolds with former minster Liz O'Donnell.
  • Áras reception

    Former president Mary Robinson with President Mary McAleese.
  • Áras reception

    Former minister Mary O'Rourke at Áras an Uachtaráin.

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