Jessica Simpson Goes to the White House
03/15/2004 AT 01:00 PM EST
"Jessica Simpson's here with us, which means we finally introduced reality TV to (Ford's) theatre," President George W. Bush told the audience Sunday night at Washington's annual Ford Theater gala, PEOPLE reports.
"An American Celebration at Ford's Theatre," hosted by "Frasier" star Kelsey Grammer, is scheduled to air July 4th weekend on ABC.
Simpson, 23, sang two songs from her current hit album ("In This Skin"): "Take My Breath Away" and "Angel." She also acknowledged that she's waited "a very long time" for her current success on the album charts.
"Life right now is almost too good to be true," she gushed to PEOPLE. "It's kind of dreamland right now. But I'm taking the time to enjoy every moment of it, because I know that it can not be here tomorrow."
She went on to say, "I have a great family and great fans who've rooted me on to where I'm at and everyone's experiencing it with me."
For her historic preservation efforts, First Lady Laura Bush was honored at Sunday's gala, along with six Medal of Honor winners recognized for their heroism on the battlefield.
"I wanted to be here tonight to support the President and all the men and women in uniform," said Simpson, who also sang at Bush's inauguration in 2001.
Other performers Sunday included Michelle Williams from Destiny's Child, Patti LaBelle, Gary Sinise, David Spade and country favorites Brad Paisley and the band Rascal Flatts.
Prior to the gala, the Bushes hosted a White House reception, which Simpson attended her husband and MTV costar, Nick Lachey, and her parents. "It was actually my third time being there," Lachey, 30, told PEOPLE. "It's always very cool to go though. It never gets old."
It better not, especially given the political aspirations Lachey has expressed. As such, Simpson may even end up First Lady -- of Cincinnati that is, since Lachey is thinking of running for mayor of the city.
The idea struck him, he tells PEOPLE, after "seeing some of the struggles that the city was going through and wanting to be able to make a difference in that city. It does interest me. Politics interests me. ... I think it would be something that would be much further down the line. But it would be an interesting role to play."