Fact: Barbra Streisand is not performing or introducing or anything at the Presidential Gala on Sunday night. And she may not show up for the swearing-in and other inaugural festivities the following day. Is something dreadfully amiss?
Whispered Reason No. 1: The Clintons are irritated at Babs because when she attended her first Renaissance Weekend over New Year’s, she wore her name tag only some of the time.
“People were furious with her,” said one attendee. “Everyone wears a name tag,” in the spirit of democratization of deep thinkers. Well, the president doesn’t. His wife, however, did.
If Streisand thought Her Divaness was recognizable to everyone, she was wrong. At one point, according to a few who were there, she bent over tiny Ruth Westheimer, took the sex counselor’s cheeks in her hands, and said, “Dr. Ruth, I’m your biggest fan.” To which Westheimer replied, “Who are you?”
Whispered Reason No. 2: Streisand is irritated at the Clintons because they won’t let her sleep in the White House in the same room as her boyfriend, actor James Brolin.
The Official Reason: Streisand has been nominated for a Golden Globe Award and will be in Los Angeles on Sunday at that ceremony.
As for the White House accommodations, Marge Tabankin, a political activist who runs Streisand’s foundation, said: “That is the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever heard. She has an open invitation to stay there.”
As for the egregious breach in name tag etiquette: “I don’t know if she wore one or not,” she said.
In fact, the Clintons do observe a policy of having unmarried couples stay in separate bedrooms while at the White House, said Neel Lattimore, press secretary to Hillary Rodham Clinton.