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Governors Ball 2010: Obama Toasts Constituents, Spouses (PHOTOS, VIDEO, POLL)

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The nation's governors and their spouses (or in Mark Sanford's case, his son Landon) gathered at the White House on Sunday night for the Governors' Ball, an annual black-tie event held in the State Dining Room.

The White House served the governors classic dishes like rib eye roast and Baked Alaska. Read the full menu details here.

President Obama began his toast by joking "This is not too stiff of an affair, because last year, Ed Rendell led a conga line. We still have photographs that we may use." See photos of the event last year (though, sadly, there are no images of the conga line). He kept the toast brief, saluting the constituents and "to our spouses and families who make extraordinary sacrifices...Michelle is starting to clink already" he joked as he looked at his wife.

Full video and photos below.

It's also worth noting that Obama made his toast with a wine glass filled with water, as he had during the state dinner for India in November.

Quick Poll

What do you think of Obama toasting with water?

Great. The man has to work, after all.

Lame! He should at least pretend to take a sip of wine.

He can toast with whatever he wants.


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The seating arrangement according to the pool report:

Gov. Tim Pawlenty of Minnesota was seated to the right of FLOTUS. Neither he nor any other guest was seen measuring drapes, though of course the pool can only attest to the 10 minutes it was in the room.

In the back row: Gov. Charlie Crist of Florida - well beyond hugging range - at Table 3 with Govs. Bobby Jindal of Louisiana and Mike Beebe of Arkansas, and Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner.

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger of Calif. sat beside Wisconsin Gov Jim Doyle, with Interior Sect. Salazar two seats to Arnold's right, and the two governors clicked glasses at the toasts.

Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm, who got a shoutout from Obama during his pre-toast remarks, was in a striking emerald jacket at Table 12 with FLOTUS and Pawlenty.

Also spotted, at separate tables: Gov. David Paterson of NY, Gov. Bill Richardson of NM. Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel and Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood were seated together.

Vice President Biden was at the table in the middle, with a head-on view of the lectern.

Apologies to the many other VIPs. Presumably, all the governors in town for the NGA were at the dinner, but no attendance list was available. I can report that Texas' chief executive, Rick Perry, nine days from the primary and never a fan of the NGA anyway, was home campaigning today.

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