The Sahalis: Gate crashers and con artists

The Sahalis: Gates crashers and con artists

An interesting backstory is developing within the ongoing controversy over a Northern Virginia couple that crashed President Barack Obama’s State Dinner recently.

Turns out Tareq and Michaela Sahali also wormed their way into Gov. Tim Kaine’s inner circle and have connections with incoming governer Bob McDonnell. They donated thousands to Kaine’s and McDonnell’s gubernatorial campaigns and the current governor awarded with them with appointments to state commissions.

Now Kaine is scrambling to explain how he joined a not-so-exclusive list of victims to the nation’s most famous gate crashers and obvious con artists.

According to Virginia election financing records, Sahali gave $5,500 to Kaine’s campaign for governor. That kind of money generally gets a quid pro quo and Kaine reciprocated by lending his name to America’s Polo Cup, a “charity” event created by the Sahalis in Leesburg.

The America’s Polo Cup event was sponsored by the Journey for the Cure Foundation, a charity created by the Sahalis for purposed purpose of benefiting groups like the National Multiple Sclerosis Society and the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.

But most of the money raised by the event apparently went to the Sahalis to support their lavish lifestyles and vendors to the event say they still haven’t been paid for the event held in 2007. The charity’s web site was shut down and a criminal investigation is underway.

Kaine also appoined Taraq Sahali to the Virginia Tourism Board.

Virginia's new first lady: She shook it for the Washington Redskins

Virginia's new first lady: She shook it for the Washington Redskins

Sahali also contributed to incoming Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell’s campaign and McDonell admits knowing the couple.

“I’ve been friendly with them,” McDonnell told a recent news conference. “I’ve seen them on a couple occasions over the last three or four years, but that’s really the extent of the relationship. I didn’t know anything about their recent entry into the White House and I’m reading things about them that I did not know before.”

McDonnell’s wife, a former Washington Redskins cheerleader, says she knows Michaela Salahi from reunion gatherings of the Redskinettes. Salahi and McDonnell performed at a halftime performance of former Redskins cheerleaders in September but now it turns out Sahali crashed the reunion and was never actually a member of the squad.

My guess is the Sahalis will not get an appointment to anything form McDonnell.