It was Rep. Robert Garcia (D-N.Y.) who said that President Reagan's speech was "baloney" at the dinner of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, which was reported in Friday's Style section. Another person attending the dinner, Ray J. Garcia, did not find the president's speech unconvincing.
There was dancing in the grand foyer of the White House last night and chanting on the sidewalk outside, each out of step with the other.
While Ronald and Nancy Reagan were host to Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos and his wife, Imelda, at a state dinner, about 100 demonstrators protested Marcos' U.S. visit and his wife's well-known spending habits. "Imelda's luxury--people's poverty," said one sign. "Down with Marcos," shouted the crowd.
Under a new White House security measure, President Reagan and his wife did not step out on the North Portico steps to greet their dinner guests. Instead, they waited inside for the Marcos motorcade and danced to the U.S. Marine Orchestra. You could catch a glimpse of just the two of them if you peeked in through the glass doors.
Marcos and his wife paid no attention to the demonstrators and hurried inside. Imelda Marcos gave both the Reagans kisses, one on each cheek.
The 140 guests dined by candlelight in the Rose Garden, one of the few instances -- if not the only one -- in which the Reagans have held a state dinner under the stars. There were small white lights threaded through the shrubbery, and gently swaying Japanese lanterns hung from the trees. The scene fell somewhere between a Christmas image and a South Seas fantasy.
Marcos seemed overwhelmed by the dinner's rose garden setting, which he called "a fairylike party . . . some dreamland." He said he would remember it as the "firefly party in the White House."
Both Reagan and Marcos seemed to be trying to make up for the years of strained relations between their countries. In his toast, Reagan said, "Today a strong defense alliance is a major factor in contributing to the security of the Philippines and to the maintenance of peace and security in Asia."
The president referred to the review of the Philippine bases agreement that will begin next year when, he said, the U.S. and the Philippines will modernize their security relationship to best serve their mutual security interests.
"Our common determination to achieve a better life doesn't mean we need to be alike," said Reagan. "We need only to treat one another in a spirit of generosity and mutual respect."
Marcos, alluding to policies of Reagan's predecessors, noted he would be less than candid if he didn't speak to the "adversity and misunderstanding which we face together . . . we are in a period of ferment."
Marcos told Reagan that there have been doubts and even fears in Asia that the United States has become "weary" of its responsibility for the world community. He praised Reagan for his leadership in stopping the "drift and slide of America's position in the world.
Marcos' visit, his first to the United States in 16 years, has been highly controversial. Relations between the two governments were tense during the previous administration because President Carter opposed both the imposition of martial law and alleged human rights violations by the Marcos government. But last night, the Reagans welcomed the Marcoses warmly, even though a number of congressmen and senators publicly opposed the visit. Landlord Marcos wants to use this visit to improve his sagging image at home while trying to increase the rent on U.S. military bases in the Philippines.
The guest list was provocative. Mixed in with the tycoons and government officials, you could see not only the people you read about in America's gossip columns, but also those who who write about them. Liz Smith was there from the New York Post, Jody Jacobs came from the Los Angeles Times and Bob Colacello came from "Interview," the tabloid about America's beautiful and powerful people.
Well known sports names included that of golf course designer Robert Trent Jones Jr., who said he's had a long involvement with the Philippines, where he has designed a half-dozen courses. Not the one, however, that Marcos plays on.
"I'm not really sure why I'm here," said Jones, describing how he once testified before Congress on behalf of Marcos' opposition leader, Benigno S. Aquino, who was imprisoned at the time and served 7 1/2 years.
Allegiances among the guests, who appeared more social than usual, were largely to Imelda Marcos and Nancy Reagan. For instance, actress Arlene Dahl and her escort, Marc Rosen, Elizabeth Ardens' vice president, told of being entertained last year by Imelda Marcos at a private dinner party in New York when she also entertained them with an impromptu concert. The Philippine first lady often sings at her husband's state dinners, reportedly after some persuasion.
Others present were Standard Oil of Indiana's John E. Swearingen and his wife Bonnie, Hong Kong shipping magnate Y.K. Pao, who flew here especially for the dinner, and Spanish Countess Luis de Romanones of Madrid.
Imelda Marcos, who has been governor of metropolitan Manila since 1975 and minister of human settlements since 1978, has had her own schedule with U.S. officials here. Last night she wore the traditional Philippine terno, made of cloth woven from pineapple leaves. The raspberry-colored dress featured a scooped neck, butterfly sleeves and a petaled hemline. Nancy Reagan wore a white long-sleeved dress with a shimmering beaded top and, as one guest noted, "matched the decor."
After the evening's entertainment, the Fifth Dimension, had finished singing, the Reagans and Marcoses went on stage together. Someone wondered whether Imelda Marcos would grab the microphone.
The president and Mrs. Reagan saw the Marcoses off and returned to dance a couple of numbers in the Grand Foyer. They then went upstairs, but not before pausing to have their pictures taken with former Dallas Cowboy quarterback Roger Staubach and his wife. Later, when someone kidded Staubach about his Rolaids commercials, he said, "I feel like it's a public service spot -- all those people out there with heartburn." Staubach, who shares an interest with the first lady in antidrug programs, met Mrs. Reagan this summer in Dallas.
Andy Warhol, lurking in the Blue Room with Jerry Zipkin, Commerce Undersecretary Peter McCoy and his wife Kacey, and Oscar de la Renta, called the party the "best thing I have ever been to in my life." Asked how he liked dinner -- lobster and Maryland crab, capon in flamed brandy sauce and sugar baskets filled with fresh fruit sorbet -- Warhol said he was on a diet:"You've got to be pencil thin."
Countess de Romanones wore a spectacular diamond-and-emerald necklace converted from a tiara ("I don't get much of a chance to wear it that way unless one of the children gets married"). She said she was at an age -- middle-aged and stunning -- when men usuallly "look at me from the neck down and I say I'm not going to wear it anymore."
During the evening, the White House was ablaze with lights. In the distance you could see the Washington Monument and the Jefferson Memorial and just barely, if you looked closely, the figure of Jefferson. Atop the White House, an American flag flapped in the night breeze.
"I love to look at the White House from this angle, with the flag all lighted up," said Secretary of State George P. Shultz, who would not discuss the Middle East situation. "It's really a stunning scene."
De la Renta, known for living and entertaining well, observed that the White House impressed even him. "It'a a zillion times better," he said. "I cannot compete with a country. Look at that view. It's magic. It's a midsummer night's dream."
Guest list for last night's dinner:
President Ferdinand Marcos and Imelda Marcos
Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr., vice governor, Ilocos Norte
Irene R. Marcos
Cesar A. Virata, prime minister and minister of finance, and Mrs. Virata
Carlos P. Romulo, minister of foreign affairs, and Mrs. Romulo
Eduardo Z. Romualdez, ambassador to the United States, and Concepcion Romualdez
Juan Ponce Enrile, minister of national defense
Roberto V. Ongpin, minister of industry, trade and investment
Arturo Tanco, minister of agriculture
Geronimo Z. Velasco, minister of energy
Juan C. Tuvera, presidential executive assistant
Roberto Benedicto, chairman, Philippine Sugar Commission
George and Janice Abbott of New York City
Michael H. Armacost, U.S. ambassador to the Philippines, and Mrs. Armacost
James A. Baker III, chief of staff and assistant to the president, and Susan Baker
Robert A. Beck, chairman, Prudential Insurance Co. of America, and Mrs. Beck
Frances Bergen of Los Angeles
Sidney F. and Frances Brody of Los Angeles
Vice President Bush and Barbara Bush
Sen. Harry F. Byrd Jr. (Ind.-Va.)
Henry A. and Jitka Byroade of Potomac, Md.
Anna C. Chennault, president, TAC International Inc., and Gen. John Alison
Van Cliburn, pianist, and Riddle Bee Cliburn
Bob Colacello of Interview Magazine
Arlene Dahl, actress, and Marc Rosen, vice president, Elizabeth Arden
Donald Davis of United Press International
Michael K. Deaver, deputy chief of staff and assistant to the president, and Carolyn Deaver
Oscar de la Renta, fashion designer
Sen. Jeremiah Denton (R-Ala.) and Jane Denton
Luis de Romanones and Aline de Romanones, of Madrid and New York City
Donald J. Devine, director, Office of Personnel Management, and Ann Devine
Mario d'Urso, managing director, Lehman Brothers Kuhn Loeb
Richard Ferris, chairman, United Airlines Inc., and Kelsey Ferris
Rep. Thomas S. Foley (D-Wash.) and Heather Foley
Margot Fonteyn, ballerina, and Robert Arias, former Panamanian ambassador to Great Britain
Ted Graber, interior decorator
Nelson G. and Noel Gross of Saddle River, N.J.
Lloyd N. Hand, former chief of protocol, and Lucy Ann Hand
Gordon Hanna, editorial manager, Scripps-Howard Newspapers, and Annie Lou Hanna
Fred Hartley, chairman, Union Oil Co., and Margaret Hartley
Sen. S.I. Hayakawa (R-Calif.) and Marge Hayakawa
Marta Istomin, artistic director, Kennedy Center, and Eugene Istomin, pianist
John H. Johnson, publisher, and Eunice Johnson
Robert Trent Jones Jr., golf course designer, and Claiborne Jones
John W. Kluge, of Metromedia Inc., and Patricia Kluge
Harding Lawrence, former chairman, Braniff International, and Mary Lawrence
Jody Jacobs, Los Angeles Times, and Bernard Leason
Robert McFarlane, deputy assistant to the president for national security affairs, and Jonda McFarlane
Edwin Meese III, counselor to the president, and Ursula Meese
Louise Melhado of New York City
Virginia Milner of Beverly Hills
Lauro and Juliette Neri of West Covina, Calif.
Capt. John J. O'Donnell, president, Airline Pilots Association, and Frances O'Donnell
Yue-Kong Pao of World Wide Shipping Group, Hong Kong, and Doreen Cheng
Patricia Paterson of New York City
Supreme Court Justice Lewis F. Powell Jr. and Josephine Powell
David M. Roderick, chairman, U.S. Steel Corp., and Bettie Roderick
Mary Roebling of Trenton, N.J.
Selwa Roosevelt, chief of protocol, and Archibald Roosevelt
Dr. Frank Royal, president, National Medical Association, and Mrs. Royal
Dianne Sawyer of CBS
Secretary of State George P. Shultz and Helena Shultz
Attorney General William French Smith and Jean Smith
Liz (Mary) Smith, New York Post, and St. Clair Pugh
Rep. J. William Stanton (R-Ohio) and Peggy Stanton
Roger Staubach, sports personality, and Mrs. Staubach
Mr. & Mrs. Jacques Torczyner of New York City
John E. Swearingen, chairman, Standard Oil Co. of Indiana, and Bonnie Swearingen
Donald L. and Joyce Totten of Schaumburg, Ill.
C. William Verity Jr., chairman, Armco Inc., and Peggy Verity
June Walker, executive director, President's Commission on Executive Exchange, and Gordon Walker, vice president, Smith Barney Harris Upham & Co.
Andy Warhol, artist
William B. Webber, president, New York Banking Association, and Jacqueline Webber
Secretary of Defense Casper W. Weinberger and Jane Weinberger
Charles Z. Wick, director, USIA, and Mary Jane Wick
Bernardo and Margaret Yorba of Anaheim, Calif.
Henry and Beatrice Zenzie of New York
Jerome Zipkin of New York City