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HOME > The Real Housewives > The Real Housewives of D.C.

Bravo polling public about 'Real Housewives' White House crashers


By Christopher Rocchio, 12/16/2009 

Bravo is reportedly seeking public input to help its decision on whether alleged White House party crashers Michaele and Tareq Salahi should become The Real Housewives of D.C. cast members.

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Bravo's NBC Universal parent company is conducting a consumer survey to gauge perceptions about the Salahis, who have been accused of attending last month's state dinner at the White House for Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh without an invitation, Broadcasting & Cable reported Tuesday.

Questions included on the survey are "What are the first words that pop into your head when you think of the White House Gate Crashers story?" and "How did you feel about the amount and type of coverage the White House Gate Crashers story has received?", according to Broadcasting & Cable.

The survey also includes a section asking consumers to indicate how strongly they agree or disagree with different statements concerning the Salahis, such as "Featuring this couple on a reality show would be rewarding their actions," "If they are on a reality show, I hope no one watches," "They would make great 'love to hate' characters on a reality show," "They are train wreck characters who I would love to see more of," "Michaele Salahi is great eye candy," and "If a network gave them their own reality show, it would negatively influence my opinion of that network," Broadcasting & Cable reported.

In addition, questions about the Salahi contained on the survey are preceded by questions about Richard and Mayumi Heene -- the two-time former Wife Swap parents who orchestrated this fall's "balloon boy" hoax in an attempt to land their family a reality show deal.

Richard subsequently pled guilty to a felony count of falsely influencing the sheriff who led the rescue effort, while Mayumi pled guilty to a misdemeanor charge of knowingly filing a false report with emergency services. Both received probation.

The Salahis -- who left the dinner before the guests were seated -- managed to have contact with both President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden during their time at the event.  The Secret Service has acknowledged its personnel did not follow proper procedures to ensure the Salahis were on the guest list, however the couple has denied crashing the dinner.

Bravo began developing The Real Housewives of D.C. in May and formally ordered the fifth edition of its The Real Housewives franchise in October. 

After the alleged crashing became public, Bravo confirmed that the Salahis are being considered as The Real Housewives of D.C. cast members but added neither the network nor show's production company had any knowledge they were crashing the state dinner.

"The decision as to who will be included in the series will not be made for several months," a Bravo spokesman said. "We are continuing with the production of the show. However, specifics with respect to the Salahis are yet to be determined."

The Salahis are currently the subject of a federal investigation and were recently subpoenaed to testify at a January 20 hearing in front of the House Homeland Security Committee, however their attorney has stated they will invoke their Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination.

(Photo credit Bravo)


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