First Lady Melania stuns in a $6,000 ruffled gown alongside husband Donald as members of the Trump administration – including Kellyanne Conway, Steve Mnuchin and his wife Louise Linton – make a glamorous entrance at the White House State Dinner
- Donald Trump and Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison toasted the heritage of their respective nations at Friday night’s glamorous state dinner
- ‘I’d like to raise a glass to a very special people,’ Trump said
- Melania Trump stunned in an aqua J Mendel gown
- Australian golf star Greg Norman, Supreme Court Justice Clarance Thomas and Lachlan Murdoch joined the Trumps and Morrisons at the head table
- Rudy Giuliani was among the guests and laughed off his CNN interview
- Kellyanne Conway arrived without her husband George Conway, a longtime Trump critic
- Australia’s national colors set the theme for Friday’s state dinner in the Rose Garden of the White House
- Green and gold dominate the decorations for the event, while the menu includes Dover sole and apple tarts
President Donald Trump and Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison toasted the heritage of their respective nations at Friday night’s glamorous state dinner held under the stars in the White House Rose Garden.
Both leaders praised the spirit of the other in their toasts.
The president toasted the prime minister, his wife Jenny, and ‘every citizen of Australia. May our heroes forever inspire us. May our heritage always guide us. May our values always unite us. And may our nations always remain the home of the proud, of the brave and the free. I’d like to raise a glass to a very special people and a very very special country,’ he said.
President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump enter Friday’s state dinner alongside Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison and wife Jenny Morrison
Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin and wife Louise Linton arrive at the White House for the State Dinner
Counselor to the President Kellyanne Conway arrived solo, as her husband George remained home furiously tweeting to promote his new op-ed calling for the immediate impeachment of Trump
Morrison and Trump toasted the friendship of their two countries and the heritage of their people
Melania Trump thanked the guests and the musicians
The dinner took place outdoors under the stars in the White House Rose Garden
A military band serenaded guests from the rooftop above
Morrison honored both the president and the ‘great character’ of the American people in his remarks.
He compared Trump to Theodore Roosevelt, a president he noted he greatly admired, and noted Roosevelt was ‘also a New Yorker. He was also unconventional. He was no captive of the establishment. He was also accomplished. In fact some might say he was a maverick, he was unconventional. Above all he was inspired by the great character of the American people. There’s nothing he didn’t believe his nation could not do. And this is the heart of American greatness.’
He added: ‘Australia will never be accused of indifference in our friendship to the United States.’
Guests were treated to a musical performance from military band members of ‘Battle Hymn of the Republic,’ ‘What a Wonderful World,’ and ended with ‘Simple Gifts.’
The first lady said she wanted to give a ’round of applause’ to the musicians.
‘Thank you for all of your help,’ she said. ‘Colonel, please can we have an encore with your incredible team. Thank you.’
The evening kicked off as Donald and Melania Trump greeted the Morrisons on the North Portico of the White House as a bevy of Fox News stars, presidential supporters, Australian celebrities, and administration officials made their way into the second state dinner of the administration.
The wives exchanged cheek kisses while the president and prime minister greeted each other. Melania wore a J. Mendel aqua silk chiffon gown, with inserted pleats and bias cut waves, that cost around $6,000. Jenny Morrison was in a sleek Navy gown.
President Trump listens to the musical performance
Australian golfer Greg Norman joined the Trumps at the head table
President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump stand with Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison and his wife Jenny Morrison as they arrive for a State Dinner at the White House
Trump and the first lady Melania Trump stand outside the White House waiting for Australia’s Prime Minister and his wife. Melania’s dress by J Mendel cost around $6,000
Golfer Greg Norman with Kirsten Norman arrives at Friday’s state dinner
Rudy Giuliani with Dr. Maria Ryan
Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, left, and husband Richard DeVos
Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas with wife Ginny
The state dinner took place in the White House Rose Garden just steps from the Oval Office
Joining them at their head table were Australian golf star Greg Norman – a longtime friend of Trump’s – and his wife Kirsten Norman, Lachlan Murdoch and his wife Sarah Murdoch, Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas and his wife Ginny, and billionaire Australian businessman Anthony Pratt, whose factory in Ohio Trump and Morrison will visit on Sunday.
Gifts from the Trumps to the Morrisons
• Archival Hand-bound Leather Album within Archival Clamshell Box
Hand-tooled and hand-inscribed in 23-karat genuine gold by Washington, D.C. artisans, this bespoke album is a customary gift for an Official or State Visit during the Trump Administration. The hand-finished, calfskin leather photo album features acid free, museum-quality pages with a 300-year lifespan.
• Tiffany & Co. Revere Bowl
Crafted by renowned New York City jeweler Tiffany & Co., this pewter bowl is a customary gift for an Official or State Visit during the Trump Administration. The hand-engraved bowl displays the Seal of the President of the United States and the signatures of President Trump and Mrs. Trump.
Gifts for Prime Minister Morrison from President Trump
• Model of USS Canberra
On October 6, 2017, the United States Navy awarded a Littoral Combat Ship to be named USS Canberra. The decision was made to honor the friendship and alliance between the United States and Australia, as well as the HMS Canberra, a decommissioned ship of the Australian Royal Navy. On February 22, 2019, construction on the ship began at the Austal shipyard in Mobile, Alabama, and has a projected commissioning in 2023.
This one-of-a-kind model, showcasing the American and Australian flags, is presented in a case featuring a piece of the aluminum cut during the construction of the USS Canberra.
• Framed Map of the Battle of the Coral Sea
Created by the United States Navy, this map features the trajectory of the Battle of the Coral Sea on May 8, 1942. During World War II, after the United States learned of the Japanese plan to invade and occupy Port Moresby (present-day Papua New Guinea), two U.S. Navy carrier task forces, alongside a joint Australian-U.S. cruiser, were dispatched to oppose the offensive. The battle was a major naval encounter between the Imperial Japanese Navy and the Naval and Air Forces of the United States and Australia, which became known as the Battle of the Coral Sea. Fought between May 4th and May 8th 1942, the battle is considered the first military encounter in which aircraft carriers engaged.
Gift from Mrs. Trump to Mrs. Morrison
• Tiffany & Co. Infinity Cuff in White House Wood Leather Jewelry Box
Crafted by the renowned, iconic New York City jeweler Tiffany & Co., this sterling silver and 18-karat gold cuff is presented in a custom leather jewelry box. The hand-finished calfskin leather jewelry box was hand-tooled with 23-karat genuine gold by Washington, D.C. artisans, and features wood dividers taken from a naturally fallen magnolia tree located on White House grounds.
Pratt told reporters it was a ‘great honor’ to host the two leaders at his Wapakoneta, Ohio, facility.
The evening offered a dreamy late summer feel, as a string quartet played classical music, crickets chirped in the back ground and the flowers in the Rose Garden waved in the evening breeze.
It was a perfect fall night as the two couples walked down the White House colonnade and into the Rose Garden to a standing ovation.
Temporary flooring was laid over the grass so guests could mingle with ease.
The mood of the guests was light and festive with no talks of politics or business in the air.
Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani laughed off his controversial interview with CNN, where he contradicted himself and argued repeatedly with host Chris Cuomo.
‘Ha, ha, ha,’ Giuliani laughed as he walked by reporters on the red carpet with Dr. Maria Ryan, his guest for the evening.
The former New York City mayor denied having an extramarital affair with Ryan, a New Hampshire doctor who he allegedly called the woman with ‘big boobs,’ when he was with his then-wife Judith Giuliani.
White House counselor Kellyanne Conway arrived solo in a black lace gown with a mermaid tail in the back.
She didn’t answer questions about why her husband George Conway – a frequent critic of the Trump administration – wasn’t with her.
However, during the dinner, George Conway was active on Twitter, promoting his newly published op-ed calling for Trump’s immediate impeachment.
Norman, the retired Australian golfer, said he hadn’t golfed with Trump recently, but did concede he was speaking to the president about coming to Australia in January to see Tiger Woods play in the president’s cup.
And Norman shrugged off criticism that the president gets for golfing most weekends.
‘Nobody can golf too much,’ he said.
Lachlan Murdoch, the son of Australian media magnate and founder of Fox News Rupert Murdoch, arrived with his wife but ignored questions about his father’s health.
Making their state dinner debut was Trump adviser Stephen Miller and his girlfriend Katie Waldman, who walked through the formal entrance together arm-in-arm.
They didn’t answer questions and Waldman shyly lowered her head to the photographers as the walked by.
She recently joined the administration as Vice President Mike Pence’s spokesperson.
The guest list was heavy on Trump administration officials and guests of the Australian embassy.
Australian chef Curtis Stone, a former contestant on Trump’s ‘Celebrity Apprentice was there his wife actress Lindsay Price.
Fox stars – and frequent Trump supporters – Mario Bartiromo and Lou Dobbs joined guests for the state dinner held in the Rose Garden, under a starry Washington D.C. night.
Acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney and Trump adviser Dan Scavino walked the red carpet other together, waving to the crowd of reporters and laughing off their joint appearance.
New White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham, in a black and white dress, arrived with her boyfriend Max Miller.
And also attending is the president’s new National Security Advisor Robert O’Brien.
He wasn’t talking business though, saying there were ‘no updates tonight’ on reports the U.S. was expanding its military presence in Iran, but he did say of his first week on the job: ‘It’s been wonderful.’
Military bands entertained the guests from the rooftop
Fox Corporation Chief Executive Officer and Co-Chairman of News Corp Lachlan Murdoch and his wife Sarah
White House adviser Stephen Miller and girlfriend Katie Waldman
White House Social Media Director Dan Scavino, left, and White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney
Curtis Stone and Lindsay Stone arrive for the State Dinner
White House Counselor Kellyane Conway
Vice President Mike Pence and his wife Karen Pence arrive at the White House
President Trump and the first lady entered the dinner from the White House colonnade
Vice President Mike Pence speaks with Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas and Australian businessman Anthony Pratt during the state dinner
President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison, and Australian First Lady Jennifer Morrison ahead of the dinner
Guests mingled at the dinner
Melania Trump was seated next to Greg Norman
Senator Joe Manchin, who is working on bipartisan gun background check legislation, had no update but noted: ‘I’m still working. Every minute of every day.’
Senators Roy Blunt and Jim Risch, who is trying to work on energy legislation with the White House, were there from Capitol Hill as was House GOP Leader Kevin McCarthy and longtime Trump ally Representative Mark Meadows.
Meadows too brushed aside a question on Iran, preferring to talk about the dinner instead of news of the day.
‘I’m looking forward to celebrating tonight,’ he said.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Attorney General William Barr and Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin were among those representing the president’s cabinet.
White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow was in a great mood: ‘I think it’s terrific,’ he touted of the economy as he strode down the carpet.
Notably not in the crowd were any of the president’s children. Ivanka Trump was in Rome for a wedding while Donald Trump Jr and Eric Trump live in New York. Tiffany Trump attends Georgetown Law School in Washington D.C.
Melania Trump oversaw the decorations and entertainment
The dinner for Morrison is the second state dinner Trump has held
President Trump praised the heritage of the Australian people in his speech
President Trump and Melania Trump with Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Jenny Morrison
Press Secretary Stephanie Grisham and Max Miller
Television host Maria Bartiromo and husband Jonathan Steinberg
Guest list for State Dinner
President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump
The Prime Minister of Australia and Mrs. Jennifer Morrison
Mr. David Abney and Mrs. Sherry Abney
Ms. Frances Adamson, Secretary of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Australia
Ms. Adrienne Arsht and The Honorable C. Boyden Gray
The Honorable Alex Azar, Secretary of Health and Human Services and Mrs. Jennifer Azar
The Honorable William Barr, Attorney General and Mrs. Christine Barr
Ms. Maria Bartiromo and Mr. Jonathan Steinberg
Mr. Adam Beren and Mrs. Ellen Beren
The Honorable Roy Blunt, United States Senator from Missouri and Mrs. Abigail Blunt
Mr. David Bohigian and Mrs. Catherine Bohigian
Mr. Donald Bollinger and Mrs. Joy Bollinger
Mr. T. Ulrich Brechbühl and Mrs. Michelle Brechbühl
The Honorable Gavin Buckley, Mayor of Annapolis and Mrs. Julie Buckley
The Honorable Sean Cairncross and Ms. Emily Skor
General Angus Campbell AO DSC, Chief of the Defense Force, Australia
Mr. Andrew Carswell, Press Secretary, Office of the Prime Minister of Australia
Mr. Daniel Cathy and Mrs. Rhonda Cathy
Ms. Michelle Chan, National Security Advisor and Senior Advisor (International), Office of the Prime Minister of Australia
The Honorable Pasquale Cipollone and Mrs. Rebecca Cipollone
Air Vice Marshal Alan Clements CSC, Head of Australian Defense Staff, Embassy of Australia and Mrs. Helene Clements
The Honorable Kellyanne Conway
Her Excellency Katrina Cooper, Deputy Chief of Mission, Embassy of Australia and Mr. Keith Tuckwell
Mr. Nicholas Creevey, Senior Media Advisor, Office of the Prime Minister of Australia
The Honorable Arthur Culvahouse, American Ambassador to Australia and Ms. Melanie Aitken
The Honorable Leonard Curry, Mayor of Jacksonville and Mrs. Molly Curry
The Honorable Ronald DeSantis, Governor of Florida and Mrs. Casey DeSantis
The Honorable Betsy DeVos, Secretary of Education and Mr. Richard DeVos
Mr. Louis Dobbs and Mrs. Debi Dobbs
The Honorable Emma Doyle and Mr. Brett Doyle
The Honorable Mark Esper, Secretary of Defense and Mrs. Leah Esper
Mr. Yaron Finkelstein, Principal Private Secretary, Office of the Prime Minister of Australia
Mr. Andrew Forrest AO and Mrs. Nicola Forrest AO
Mr. Saul Fox and Ms. Hannah Strobel
Mr. Philip Gaetjens, Secretary of the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet
Ms. Sonia Gentile, Director of Program, Office of the Prime Minister of Australia
The Honorable Rudolph Giuliani and Dr. Maria Ryan
Mr. James Gorman
The Reverend Franklin Graham and Mrs. Jane Graham
The Honorable Stephanie Grisham and The Honorable Max Miller
Mr. Jack Hampton, Assistant Advisor, Office of the Prime Minister of Australia
Mr. Justin Hayhurst, First Assistant Secretary, International Division, Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet, Australia
The Honorable Katherine Henderson and Ms. Mary Screws
Ms. Diane Hendricks and Mr. Keith Rozolis
His Excellency Joseph Hockey, Ambassador of Australia to the United States and Ms. Melissa Babbage
Dr. Elizabeth Jens and Mr. Ross Allen
Ms. Tham Kannalikham
Mr. Howard Kessler and Mrs. Michele Kessler
The Honorable Henry Kissinger and Mrs. Nancy Kissinger
The Honorable Keith Krach and Mrs. Metta Krach
The Honorable Lawrence Kudlow and Mrs. Judith Kudlow
Dr. John Kunkel, Chief of Staff, Office of the Prime Minister of Australia
The Honorable Robert Lighthizer, United States Trade Representative and Ms. Claire Lighthizer
Mr. Andrew Liveris and Mr. Anthony Liveris
Mr. Nikolai Louw, Executive Officer, Office of the Prime Minister of Australia
The Honorable Viola Lyles, Mayor of Charlotte and Mr. Jeffrey Young
The Honorable Derek Lyons and Ms. Elizabeth Horning
The Honorable David Malpass and Mrs. Adele Malpass
The Honorable Joseph Manchin, United States Senator from West Virginia and Mrs. Gayle Manchin
The Honorable Kevin McCarthy, United States Representative from California and Ms. Meghan McCarthy
The Honorable Bonnie McElveen-Hunter and Mr. Bynum Hunter
Mrs. Gail McGovern and Mr. Donald McGovern
The Honorable Mark Meadows, United States Representative from North
Carolina and Mrs. Debbie Meadows
The Honorable Stephen Miller and Ms. Katie Waldman
General Mark Milley, United States Army
The Honorable Steven Mnuchin, Secretary of the Treasury and Ms. Louise Linton
The Honorable Mick Mulvaney
Mr. Lachlan Murdoch and Mrs. Sarah Murdoch
Mr. Gregory Norman and Mrs. Kirsten Norman
Mr. Roger Norman and Mrs. Elise Norman
Mrs. Sandra Oudkirk and Mr. Scott Oudkirk
The Honorable Robert O’Brien and Mrs. Louisa O’Brein
The Vice President of the United States and Mrs. Karen Pence
Mr. Isaac Perlmutter and Mrs. Laura Perlmutter
The Honorable Michael Pompeo, Secretary of State and Mrs. Susan Pompeo
The Honorable Matthew Pottinger and Mrs. Yen Pottinger
Mr. Anthony Pratt and Ms. Claudine Revere
The Honorable Lindsay Reynolds
Mrs. Georgina Rinehart
The Honorable James Risch, United States Senator from Idaho and Mrs. Vicki Risch
Mr. Paul Ritchie, Senior Communications Advisor, Office of the Prime Minister of Australia
The Honorable John F.W. Rogers and Ms. Deborah Lehr
The Honorable Wilbur Ross, Secretary of Commerce and Mrs. Hilary Ross
Mr. Phillip Ruffin and Mrs. Oleksandra Ruffin
The Honorable Daniel Scavino
The Honorable Marc Short and Mrs. Kristen Short
Dr. Michelle Simmons AO and Dr. Thomas Barlow
Mr. David Solomon and Ms. Jan Wilson
The Honorable David Stilwell and Mrs. Jan Stilwell
Mr. Kerry Stokes AC and Mrs. Christine Simpson Stokes
Mr. Curtis Stone and Mrs. Lindsay Stone
The Honorable John Sullivan, Deputy Secretary of State and Ms. Graciela Rodriguez
Justice Clarence Thomas of the Supreme Court of the United States and Mrs. Virginia Thomas
Mr. Andrew Thomas AO
Mr. Robert Thomson and Ms. Ping Wang
Ms. Elizabeth Uihlein and Mr. Jacob Peters
The Honorable Daniel Walsh and Mrs. Deborah Walsh
Mrs. Kathy Warden and Mr. Eric Warden
Mr. Nicholas Warner AO PSM, Director-General of National Intelligence
Ms. Shemara Wikramanayake and Mr. Michael Silverton
Mr. Michael Wirth and Mrs. Julie Wirth
Australia’s national colors set the theme for Friday night’s state dinner in the Rose Garden.
Green and gold dominated the decor and table settings for the outdoor event – a flower-filled evening that took place just steps away from the Oval Office.
It will be the second state dinner for Donald and Melania Trump since they entered the White House in the 2017 with the first lady taking the lead in planning the black tie occasion.
The dinner for the Australian prime minister will take place in the Rose Garden of the White House
The dinner centerpieces feature more than 2,500 roses from California in shades of yellow and Australia’s national floral emblem, the golden wattle
Military musicians will entertain the guests at Friday night’s event
The East Wing offered a preview of the event to reporters Thursday night, show casing two of the tables that will be set up for the occasion while a military string orchestra played.
The dinner took place under a starry sky with the soft light of oil lamps illuminating the well-dressed guests who will dance and dine under the shadow of the White House and with the Washington Monument visible in the distance.
Warm gold hues and soft greens dominate the dinner stage and were derived from the national flower of Australia, the golden wattle, which has a yellow flower and green foliage.
Flowers heavily dominate the decorations – an appropriate choice given its Rose Garden location. American varieties of yellow and white roses will set the back drop for the evening while the tables feature centerpieces containing more than 2,500 roses from California in shades of yellow and Australia’s national flower, the golden wattle.
The Ground Floor Corridor of the White House – where guests will walk through to reach the dinner location – will feature garden roses, jasmine vines, and dahlias, all grown in the United States, to welcome attendees.
The tables will be lit with oil lamps during the evening dinner
The menu features American late summer food
First lady Melania Trump picked the theme and decorations
The menu highlights the late summer season from America and pays homage to Australia’s special blend of culinary adaptations from its various cultures, the East Wing said in a statement.
The first course will be Sunchoke Ravioli with Reggiano Cream and Shaved Summer Vegetables.
Sunchokes, known as ‘earth apples,’ are native to North America. The pasta will be drizzled with a lemony Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese emulsion and topped with shavings of sun gold carrots, baby kale, and sunchoke chips.
State Dinner Menu
Shaved Summer Vegetables
Dover Sole with Parsley Crisps
Zucchini Squash Blossoms
Baby Garlic Rouille
Lady Apple Tart
Calvados Ice Cream
Spring Mountain Sauvignon Blanc 2017
The Argyle Pinot Noir ‘Reserve’ 2016
J Demi-Sec NV
The main course will be Dover Sole, roasted whole, then fileted and accented with Fennel Mousseline. Accompanying it will be green and yellow summer squash blossoms, which will be picked Thursday.
Dessert will be an American classic (and favorite of President Trump): Lady Apple Tart with Calvados Ice Cream – a rich vanilla ice cream topped with liquor.
A variety of American and Australian wines will be served.
Gold woven baskets with yellow roses and golden wattle – to symbolize the friendship between the two nations – will surround the guests. Pear branches from New England will fill decorative urns.
Ombre shades of yellow and green make up the table linens. Scattered throughout the place settings will be golden champagne grapes to highlight each of the countries’ wine industries.
The china settings will consist of alternating patterns from the administrations of Presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush.
Melania Trump chose a table setting and decor that would reflect the strong ties between the United States and Australia, according to her office.
Musical groups from the United States Army, Marine Corps, Navy, and Air Force entertained the guests.
The occasion is being called an ‘official visit’ instead of state visit as Morrison is not the head of state for Australia. That would be Queen Elizabeth.
The White House will be all spruced up for visit.
The first lady recently oversaw the refurbishment of the receiving rooms on the state floor of the White House – the red room, the blue room and the green room.
The rooms, which get trod through by official visitors and members of the visiting public got a fresh look with new rugs, draperies and furniture. Melania Trump also switched out some of the artwork on the wall.
Friday’s state dinner marks the second time the Trumps have bestowed such an honor on a visiting world leader. The first was for French President Emmanuel Macron in April 2018.
Guests will dine on dover sole for the main course
Australian flags were up around the White House complex Thursday ahead of the visit
In the first 24 months in office, President Barack Obama held three state dinners; President George W. Bush held two state dinners and President Bill Clinton held one state dinner, according to the White House Historical Association.
The last time Australia was honored was on May 16, 2006, when George W. Bush hosted Prime Minister John Howard.
A state dinner usually conveys a unique bond between the two countries. Macron was one of the first European leaders to embrace Trump’s presidency.
Australia has pushed its close ties to the United States.
After the 2016 election, then-Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull was the second world leader to call and congratulate Trump – after getting his cell phone number from Norman.
Norman lives in Florida and grew close to Trump over their shared love of golf.
Meanwhile, Trump and Morrison spent time together at the June G20 meeting in Osaka, Japan, and at G7 meeting last month in Biarritz, France. Additionally, the president has bonded with the Australian Ambassador to the U.S. over a game of golf at Mar-a-Lago.
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