By Amy Argetsinger and Roxanne Roberts
Washington Post Staff Writers
Thursday, November 26, 2009
A couple of aspiring reality-TV stars from Northern Virginia appear to have crashed the White House's state dinner Tuesday night, penetrating layers of security with no invitation to mingle with the likes of Vice President Biden and White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel.
Tareq and Michaele Salahi -- polo-playing socialites known for a bitter family feud over a Fauquier County winery and their possible roles in the forthcoming "The Real Housewives of Washington" -- were seen arriving at the White House and later posted on Facebook photos of themselves with VIPs at the elite gathering.
"Honored to be at the White House for the state dinner in honor of India with President Obama and our First Lady!" one of them wrote on their joint Facebook page at 9:08 p.m.
But a White House official said the couple were not invited to the dinner, not included on the official guest list and never seated at a table in the South Lawn tent.
A woman describing herself as a publicist for the Salahis denied that they were interlopers. Pressed for details, Mahogany Jones sent a statement saying simply: "The Salahis were honored to be a part of such a prestigious event. . . . They both had a wonderful time."
While the White House offered no official explanation, it appears to be the first time in modern history that anyone has crashed a White House state dinner. The uninvited guests were in the same room as President Obama, first lady Michelle Obama and Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, although it is unknown whether they met the Obamas and the guest of honor.
"Everyone who enters the White House grounds goes through magnetometers and several other levels of screenings," said Ed Donovan, a spokesman for the Secret Service. "That was the case with