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   Couple Enjoy Surprise Breakfast with Obama

NEWS INFORMATION

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News Date

12/16/2009 10:00 am

Author

Media

Columbia Broadcasting System CBS News

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News

Database Record

Entered 12/16/2009, Updated 12/16/2009

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(CBS/AP) It wasn't a state dinner, and they didn't crash it on purpose. Still, a Georgia couple who showed up at the White House a day early for a tour somehow wound up at an invitation-only breakfast with President Obama and the first lady. It left the White House once again explaining how people who were not on an event guest list wound up being ushered into the presidential mansion anyway. The improbable adventure of Harvey and Paula Darden, Obama supporters from Hogansville, Ga., took place on Veterans Day, two weeks before Virginia socialites Tareq and Michaele Salahi infamously crashed the Obamas' state dinner for the prime minister of India. The Dardens mistakenly showed up a day early for a tour scheduled through their congressman. Administration officials tell CBS News White House correspondent Mark Knoller the couple had been invited to the White House on Nov 12, but as they showed up a day early, they were approved to attend the breakfast with Mr. Obama. The White House and Secret Service both said the Dardens went through the appropriate security screenings and were allowed into the breakfast as a courtesy because there were no public tours the day they arrived. That explanation was news to Harvey Darden, 67, a retired pharmacist, who said he and his wife never were told about the breakfast. They thought they were simply starting their tour until they were ushered into the East Room, offered a buffet spread and told they'd be meeting the president.


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