A closed-press "social dinner," with steak on the menu...
President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama will welcome Massachusetts Governor Deval L. Patrick to the White House on Friday night for a private dinner, a White House aide confirms. The closed-press affair was not listed on the President's official daily schedule, but it was noted on Patrick's. Now in his second term, Patrick, 56, served as a national co-chair for the President's reelection campaign. (Above: The President and Patrick at a fundraiser in Massachusetts)
The President issued the dinner invitation on Thursday night during a phone call, Patrick told the Boston Globe today.
"It’s a social dinner. It’s a small group, but I don’t know all the people who are going to be there," Patrick said.
"We were told to come informal, and we were asked if steak was okay," Patrick said, adding "it'll be fun."
According to the latest scuttle around DC, Patrick is being considered
as a possible replacement in the second Administration if Attorney General Eric Holder steps down. But Patrick has said he will serve out his term, which ends in 2015.
Patrick's wife, Diane Patrick, a lawyer specializing in labor law, will accompany her husband to the President's dinner. The couple last joined the President and Mrs. Obama for a private dinner in August of 2011 on Martha's Vineyard, during the Obamas' annual summer vacation in Massachusetts. They dined at State Road restaurant, at a closed-press affair also attended by Senior Advisor Valerie Jarrett and Vernon Jordan.
Patrick's official schedule for Friday reads: "After breaking ground for the Fore River Bridge on the Quincy/Weymouth line this afternoon, Governor Patrick will fly to D.C. with Mrs. Patrick to have a social dinner tonight with the President at the White House."
In 2008 during the transition period, Patrick was also ostensibly in the running to be a member of President Obama's Cabinet, as Health and Human Services Secretary. But the Governor at the time quashed the rumors, saying he was focused on leading Massachusetts.
President Obama on Friday received the Presidential Daily Briefing in the morning, and later met with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in the Oval Office, joined by Vice President Joe Biden. At 1:05 PM, the President made his first post-election remarks, addressing the nation from the East Room to discuss the economy.