The economic growth in Ireland, during the 1990s, lead to changing migration patterns. Ireland became a destination country for immigrants instead of an emigration country. Before 2004 people who were born on the island of Ireland had a constitutional right to Irish citizenship. This right was removed after a referendum in 2004. National identity is a sense of community constructed through common history and defines who belongs to the nation. The purpose of this thesis is to do a critical discourse analysis of the debate in media before the referendum. The analysis was done on texts from The Irish Times, one of the major newspapers in Ireland. The main focus of the thesis is to discuss the positive self-image of the Irish and the negative picture of the others, the immigrants, and to what extent the discourse considered the Irish experience of emigration. The analysis shows that the Irish is regarded as open and welcoming while immigrants are considered to abuse the system and undermine the integrity of Irish citizenship. The experience of emigration is not discussed in great extent and almost only by the opposition to the change of the constitution.