Kaine Could Have Guessed Which Virginians Crashed the State Dinner

Kaine calls Tareq Salahi "Such a Promoter"

By Julie Carey
|  Tuesday, Dec 1, 2009  |  Updated 10:38 PM EDT
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Michaele and <a title=Tareq Salahi arrive for their exclusive interview on Today." />

Michaele and Tareq Salahi arrive for their exclusive interview on Today.

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Kaine on Party Crashers: No Surprise Here

Virginia Gov. Tim Kaine, who knows the so-called White House party crashers, gives a candid reaction to the accusations surrounding Michaele and Tareq Salahi.
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Virginia Gov. Tim Kaine called accused White House party crasher Tareq Salahi one of the state's best self-promoters Tuesday.

It's a skill that got Salahi appointed to the Virginia Tourism Corporation, but unabashed self-promoting also seems to have made Salahi and wife Michaele the focus of a Secret Service investigation. Kaine said he's not entirely surprised the flamboyant Salahi is at the center of the controversy.

"If somebody had said to me, 'Hey, some Virginians tried to crash a party and there are 7-and-a-half million Virginians, who do you think it might be?' I think I might have been able to guess it within five seconds," Kaine said.

Why?

"Because he's such a promoter," Kaine said.

Salahi first got the attention of Kaine's predecessors, the governor said. He was appointed to the Virginia Wine Board by Gov. Jim Gilmore and Gov. Mark Warner. Kaine then elevated Salahi to the Virginia Tourism Corporation, a panel that helps shape tourism policy.

Salahi was part of a state delegation that traveled to England three years ago to prepare for Jamestown's 400th anniversary celebration.

Kaine said he last saw the Salahis at the Congressional Black Caucus dinner in September, which the couple also is accused of crashing.
 

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