Security embarrassment, State Dinner crashed

Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson, meet Michaele and Tareq Salahi, the stars of the brand new blockbuster Wedding Crashers 2: State Dinner Sneak. Unlike the original comedy, the second version of the film is anything but funny and, unfortunately, completely nonfiction.

President Barack Obama gave a nice toast, the Indian prime minister enjoyed himself and First Lady Michelle Obama looked marvelous at the Obama administration's first state dinner on Nov. 24.

Everything was peachy until it was discovered that the Salahis managed not only to pass through all of the security checkpoints and attend the event without an invitation, but also shake hands with the president and take enough pictures to make a decent Facebook album.

Michaele Salahi is an aspiring reality show contestant for Bravo's new show "The Real Housewives of D.C.," a fact that can't help but remind us of the Heene family and the "Balloon Boy" mess of several weeks ago. Balloon Boy was stupid; this is serious.

According to the New York Times, Peter King of the House Homeland Security Committee admitted that, "Obviously, someone dropped the ball," and CNN reported that the Secret Service issued a statement saying, "The failing is ours."

I don't care how far the Secret Service's tail is between its legs, this absolutely cannot happen again. Ever. The individual who failed to follow protocol (a fancy SS term for "too lazy/incompetent/distracted to read the guest list") should have been fired faster than it could have taken one of the Salahis to chuck a handful of anthrax in Obama's direction.

Taxpayers have been dishing out serious dollars to protect Obama since 18 months before the November 2008 election, which means the Secret Service should be, and owes it to the public to be, pretty good at it by now. Add in the cultural impact of Obama's presidency, his contributions to the advancement of African Americans and his uncanny ability to rally and relate to the masses, and it is obvious that this lack of security is much, much more grave than, "Oops, they snuck in."

The Salahis may be facing criminal charges for their stunt, but the damage has already been done. There are pictures of the couple shaking hands with Obama and chummily posing with Joe Biden in Michaele's Facebook album entitled "White House State Dinner." Seriously, add a Solo cup, take off the tux, add a "my bffl Biden" caption and it's college party crashing all over again. Isn't that reassuring?

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