Photo Credit: MANDEL NGAN/AFP
Aspiring Real Housewives of D.C. stars Michaele and Tareq Salahi are at the center of a media storm surrounding their alleged "crashing" of a White House state dinner.
The couple, dressed in somber black and blue attire, appeared via satellite on the Today show this morning to plead their innocence.
Speaking on their behalf, Tareq Salahi said that "being portrayed as party crashers" is "the most devastating thing that's ever happened to us."
Michaele elaborated, saying their "lives have been destroyed" and that "everything we have worked for" has been upended by the allegations.
A spokesperson for Bravo TV, which airs the Real Housewives series, told The New York Times that Michaele had been "under consideration" for the D.C. show at the time of their White House visit. The channel was under the impression the Salahis had a confirmed invitation to the event.
White House spokesperson Robert Gibbs also appeared on the show to talk about President Obama's plan for the war in Afghanistan, and also fielded a question from Matt Lauer about the incident.
"They have been told on a number of different occasions that they didn't have tickets for the gala," Gibbs said. "You don't show up at the White House as a misunderstanding."
Responding to Matt Lauer's relaying of the White House insistence that they knowingly arrived at the event sans invitation, Michaele said "there isn't anyone that would have the audacity or poor behavior to do this."
The Salahis said they hope to pay an in-person visit to the Today show, where they intend to show documentation that proves they were, in fact, invited to the state dinner. They don't yet have a another Today appearance scheduled, but told Lauer they would "sit on your couch" and show the materials that exonerate them.
In case you missed it, the Today show Web site has video of the Salahis' appearance.
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