From the White House to Graceland

By Amy Argetsinger and Roxanne Roberts
Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Bill Clinton was supposedly the biggest presidential Elvis Presley fan ever -- the Secret Service even code-named him "Elvis." But did he ever undertake a diplomatic mission to Graceland?

No, sir! Instead, George W. Bush will become the first sitting president to visit the King's Memphis home when he and Laura escort Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi there June 30. The White House yesterday announced the plans for the awesomest road trip ever (except that they'll probably fly), slated for a day after the two heads of state and close pals meet in Washington. A little less conversation, a little more action . . .

The trip had to have been Koizumi's idea. The 64-year-old PM is well known as the most serious Elvis disciple of today's world leaders. He shares a birthday (Jan. 8) with the rock icon, and his brother once ran the Presley fan club's Yokohama chapter. In 1987, he was one of the key players in erecting a bronze statue of Presley in Tokyo. He's sung Elvis tunes poolside at Bush's Crawford ranch and dazzled Condi Rice with his knowledge of Elvis trivia at a G8 dinner. And in 2001, he released a 25-song compilation CD called "Junichiro Koizumi Presents: My Favorite Elvis Songs." It was sold only in Japan, and all proceeds went to charity.

Surely he had made the grand Memphis pilgrimage before? "This is his first time visiting Graceland as prime minister," a Japanese Embassy spokesman said. "I cannot confirm that he hasn't been there before."

Jack Soden , CEO of Elvis Presley Enterprises, said the only precedent for such a visit is when Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter stopped by, several years after he left office. "We're very excited," he said. "It will be another very fun day at Graceland."

Let's Move Along, Folks. It's Just a Little Typoe.

A campaign breakfast or presidential launch? A recent e-mail from Rep. J.D. Hayworth 's reelection campaign invited supporters to join the Arizona Republican, his wife and "The Honorable Dan Quayle , 44th President of the United States."

Whoa! How did we miss this? Mr. Potatoe Head running in 2008?

Well . . . no. Quayle was actually the 44th vice president, but a typo dropped the "vice" and started a buzz among startled GOPers who thought Quayle wanted to be the next -- that would be 44th -- president.

"We did have a couple people wondering if this was his big announcement," said Todd Sommers , Hayworth's campaign manager. A correction was quickly issued; at press time, the only heart-pounding element at the June 24 event will be the coffee.

Surreal Estate

Buyer: Tucker and Susan Carlson

Listing price: $ 3,995,000

Details : The host of MSNBC's "The Situation With Tucker Carlson" is bringing his show to Washington and will soon close on a 1939 fieldstone colonial in the Palisades. The couple made a killing last year when they sold their Alexandria home and moved to New Jersey for the show's launch; now they're moving their four kids into a six-bedroom, 7 1/2- bath home with a huge family room, back yard and heated pool.

Hey, Isn't That . . . ?

· Bill Clinton and Hillary Rodham Clinton at the liberal schmooze fest for Peter Beinart , author of "The Good Fight." The Clintons book-ended Monday night's party at the Georgetown home of hosts Mark Penn and Nancy Jacobson. Hillary was in and out early; the former prez arrived an hour later after picking up an award from the National Association of Broadcasters.

· Sugar Ray Leonard maintaining his fighting weight at a steak restaurant. The former champion boxer, with his brother and sister-in-law Sunday at Morton's in Bethesda, ate salmon; his tablemates chose crab cakes and Porterhouse.


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