President Barack Obama celebrated St. Patrick’s Day with the GOP’s favorite Democrat, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, and assorted revelers at Wednesday’s Friends of Ireland luncheon, where he noted the “heavy absence” of the late Sen. Ted Kennedy, who Obama believes “is still watching this body closely, particularly this week,” as health care reform legislation once again became the front-and-center issue on Capitol Hill.

Oh, and did you know that Obama’s “great-great-great-great-great” grandfather was Irish? Well, he was. –KA

“Political Punch” on ABC News:

Mr. Obama recalled that maybe five years ago on St. Patrick’s Day, Kennedy “cornered me on the Senate floor for my support on a piece of legislation. And I told him, ‘You’ve got my vote, Teddy, but I got to tell you, this is not looking good. I do not think this thing is going to fly.’ But it did, with votes to spare. And so I grabbed Teddy, pulled him aside. I said, ‘How did you pull that off?’ And he just patted me on the back and he said, ‘Luck of the Irish!’”

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