Royal biographer: this is why Prince Harry and Meghan Markle weren’t invited to Barack Obama’s 60th party

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Eyebrows were raised when the Sussexes did not appear to be invited to former US president Barack Obama's 60th shindig recently. (PHOTO: Gallo Images/Getty Images)
Eyebrows were raised when the Sussexes did not appear to be invited to former US president Barack Obama's 60th shindig recently. (PHOTO: Gallo Images/Getty Images)

It was undoubtedly the A-list party of the year yet there were two noticeable names missing from the guest list – Prince Harry and Meghan Markle.

The Sussexes did not crack the nod to former US president Barack Obama’s   star-studded 60th birthday bash despite having formed a friendship with him in recent years.

According to royal biographer Angela Levin, who wrote Harry: A biography of a Prince, the reason stems from the current rift between the Sussexes and the royal family. Barack and wife Michelle, Levin believes, wanted to take “a step back from the couple” out of respect for the queen.

“I’m sure that if they say we can only deal with one brother and his wife – you cannot have both because they are so far apart now – they will go towards Prince William,” Levin told The Sun.  

“The Obamas clearly always regarded Harry highly, but I am sure they can see through Meghan. They may stay around, but they won't be as pally as they once were.”

(PHOTO: Gallo Images/Getty Images)
In April 2016 Michelle and Barack Obama visited Prince Harry, Kate Middleton, Prince George and Prince William at Kensington Palace. (PHOTO: Gallo Images/Getty Images)

Royal author Phil Dampier agrees, suggesting the Obamas want to be seen as “neutral” following the couple’s public attacks on the monarchy particularly their tell-all with Oprah Winfrey in March.

“It certainly was significant that they were not there and makes you wonder, why not?”

Michelle commented on the royal family drama following the Sussexes’ Oprah interview, telling Access Hollywood she hoped Meghan and Harry and the royal family could “find forgiveness” at some point “because there’s nothing more important than family”.

The Obamas threw a lavish do at their seven-bedroom holiday mansion in Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts, on 8 August which included guests such as soul crooner John Legend and his wife, Chrissy Teigen; Meghan's friend, CBS This Morning host Gayle King; actors George Clooney and Tom Hanks; and music royalty Jay-Z and Beyoncé. 

Harry and Meghan’s friendship with the Obamas stretches back a few years with Barack and Harry first bonding over the prince’s Invictus Games. The former president starred in a light-hearted clip with Harry and the queen in 2016 to promote the event.  

(PHOTO: Gallo Images/Getty Images)
Prince Harry and Michelle Obama meet the children of servicemen and women at the opening ceremony of the Invictus Games in Oregon, Florida, in 2016. (PHOTO: Gallo Images/Getty Images)

Meanwhile, Meghan has often spoken about her admiration for Michelle and attended her talk at London’s Southbank Centre in December 2018.

Levin also criticised Meghan’s 40x40 charity endeavour she launched on her 40th birthday on 4 August, saying it’s uncannily similar to Barack’s 60x60 birthday appeal, where people were asked to donate 60 or six dollars to a charitable cause. 

Meghan’s initiative sees her recruiting 40 women to spend 40 minutes of their time to help women to go back to the post-pandemic workforce.

“It must be irritating for the Obamas that the concept is so similar to theirs,” Levin notes.


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