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NBC: We bagged first chat with White House Party "Crashers"


(This post has been updated)

NBC bragged Monday that "White House Party 'Crashers' " Michaele and Tareq Salahi will give their side of the Great State Dinner Kerfuffle exclusively to Matt Lauer, via remote hookup, Tuesday morning on "Today" show. Set your alarms for 7 a.m.

Imagine the surprise of CNN's Larry King, whose producers had managed to contact the Salahis directly last week and book them for King's show Monday night, only to have the Salahis's wrangler, Mahogany Jones, call CNN back before the cable news network could even get out a news release boasting about the "get" to "postpone" the interview while promising faithfully that when the Salahis finally did talk, Larry would get first crack.

A CNN rep told us Jones shed no light on why she was "postponing" the interview. So the dumping of Larry in favor of Matt must remain forever a mystery. Except, oh wait, Michaele is the leading candidate to become Supreme Diva on Bravo network's "Real Housewives of D.C." And, in one of those incredible coincidences that makes covering the TV industry so life affirming, Bravo is owned by.....NBC!

According to sources who want to remain anonymous because why should they be any different from anyone else whose been in duck-and-cover mode on this story, not one dime of money made its way to the Salahi coffers for this interview. This tip is no doubt in response to reports the Salahis cancelled on Larry in order to seek the highest bidder for the interview in which they are expected to insist they did not realize they were breaching security when they allegedly crashed last week's state dinner whose attendees included the allegedly heavily protected President of the United States.

But, even if Michaele Salahi isn't going to see a dime off of her chat with Matt, she could stand to see some real coin if she becomes a regular on "Real Housewives of D.C." and becomes Famous for Being Famous. Maybe she'd launch a clothing line. How about a new perfume? Maybe even a Michaele Salahi Bobblehead Doll, complete with red and gold sari and a little White House dinner "invitation." The possibilities are endless. But, sadly, Bravo will not yet confirm whether Salahi has made the "Real Housewives" cut. Maybe this came into play as the Salahis were deciding to stick it to Larry and cozy up to to NBC's "Today" show.

You think?

Typically, Bravo does not formally announce which lucky Ladies Who Lunch have been chosen for a coveted "Real Housewives" slot until shortly before the show launches. But we all know that normally, a chick whose already grabbing this kind of attention would be a slam dunk. The show's producer had already been tailing the glitteringly blonde Michaele for weeks, up to and including her arrival at the security checkpoint at last week's White House State dinner.

But instead of dancing the happy dance over the millions of dollars in free show publicity last week's alleged security breach has lobbed in the direction of the new "Real Housewives" spinoff, Bravo suits have been flinging themselves on their sofas, chewing the cushions in an ecstasy of grief.

On the one hand, here they are, sitting on a ratings motherlode. On the other hand, Bravo is owned by NBC Universal which, at presstime, is still owned by behemoth General Electric, which does not necessarily want to embarrass the White House, the Secret Service, or, for that matter, any division of the federal government with which it does business -- particularly for the sake of a little reality series about Ladies Who Lunch in Washington.

And, speaking of the feds: In another one of those mind-boggling coincidences, the Salahis's appearance on "Today" comes just two days before their command performance before the House Homeland Security Committee, whose chair, Bennie G. Thompson (D-Miss) says the Salahi's have been invited to show up at the hearing, but whose committee rep says will not rule out a subpoena if the much-in-the-news couple declines the "invitation."

It appears the Salahis's are taking a page from the David Letterman Playbook, and will spin the potentially career-killing story in the Court of Television before the case goes before the big guns.


By Lisa de Moraes  |  November 30, 2009; 8:35 PM ET
Categories:  TV News  
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Next: Salahis speak!

Comments

Hey - the Scum Bag Millionaires have finally made it!

No more standing in the window behind the set and waving like regular folks!

Posted by: palmtree2001 | November 30, 2009 9:28 PM | Report abuse

I think Today has, maybe, 10 viewers for every one L.King has? That would seem to be a factor for the East Coast Champion attention hogs.

Posted by: kls1 | November 30, 2009 9:31 PM | Report abuse

Interviewing criminals. I wonder if Matt will ask the tough questions or just wear his glasses and pretend like he's doing such a good job. Question - "where's the invitation"; "when did you receive it"; "why are so many people saying you owe them money"; "why haven't any money you "raised for charity gone to charity"? I'm sure he will just peer over his glasses and pretend he's doing his job and they won't have any of their distractors on to tell the world who they really are.

Posted by: rlj1 | November 30, 2009 9:39 PM | Report abuse

Any program I see these sycophants on I will boycott including their sponsors. Enough is enough.

Posted by: Fate1 | November 30, 2009 10:12 PM | Report abuse

I hate to watch but I don't know if I will be able to tear my eyes away. And, I love you Lisa.

Posted by: esmerelda123 | November 30, 2009 10:15 PM | Report abuse

"because why should they be any different from anyone else whose been in duck-and-cover mode on this story"

With all the bloviating going on about this story, leave it to Lisa to cut through the static!

Posted by: Georgetwoner | November 30, 2009 10:27 PM | Report abuse

It was predictable that the Today Show would be the first to stoop to interview these two, after flirting with the Octomom. Even Bravo & the Real Housewives franchise will probably have the good sense to nix them.

Posted by: pieguy | November 30, 2009 10:29 PM | Report abuse

Brilliant work! I ♥ Pookie!

Posted by: Nosy_Parker | December 1, 2009 2:07 AM | Report abuse

I can understand why we all want to see this interview.

These people are truly important, relevant, and have something to say worth hearing.

Please tell me that they will do some jail time for trespassing at a White House State Dinner. We can't really encourage everyone to try to get into the White House just for giggles, can we?

I'd like to see them fined one year's salary for everyone who gets fired as a result of this lapse in security.

Posted by: postfan1 | December 1, 2009 6:23 AM | Report abuse

The media have no scruples. Sure. Go ahead and give these two jerks all this free publicity. The US is real good at this kind of stuff, but we can't manufacture jack $h!t. Welcome to the future.

Posted by: adrienne_najjar | December 1, 2009 7:05 AM | Report abuse

These pathetic sleaze bags are getting exactly what they crave--publicity and a chance for cash. This is sheer lunacy. Shame on NBC and anyone elase who kisses their behinds for ratings. These two frauds should be tossed in jail.. Let's see them deal with THAT "reality".

Posted by: mybandy | December 1, 2009 8:58 AM | Report abuse

Boy, "bagging the Salahis" is really something to brag about, NBC. This network's journalistic integrity is zilch. I quit watching The Today Show almost five years ago, and this Jerry Springer Moment was a reminder why.

Posted by: wmpowellfan | December 1, 2009 11:02 AM | Report abuse

Why, Why interview the criminals. It is a "Breach." Jail keeper, should be interviewing them. Contact the station for being dumb and falling for this "Flim Flam family." What school did these so call news people go to? Intelligent smart people are killing this nation. You do not see fools acting out, these are educated, bright people.

Posted by: revruc1 | December 1, 2009 4:07 PM | Report abuse

I know they are crooks trying to get rich. I can tell by the wife trying to pose, looking like she is from a plastic factory. Hate to see her after a bath. He looking all pitiful and dumb, as to what happened to our family. Trailer trash is what they are, but living in a house. They probably sued and won it.

Posted by: revruc1 | December 1, 2009 4:11 PM | Report abuse

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