White House Correspondents’ Dinner: ‘We are not the enemy,’ say press corps – Staff and agencies Sunday 30 April 2017 01.13 EDT

In the absence of star guest Donald Trump, the usually celebrity-filled soiree took a more serious turn to focus on defence of journalistic freedom

‘We are not fake news’: absent Trump target of White House Correspondents’ Dinner

The White House press corps has gathered for its annual black-tie dinner, a toned-down affair this year after Donald Trump snubbed the event, becoming the first incumbent US president to bow out in 36 years.

Without Trump, who scheduled a rally instead to mark his 100th day in office, the usually celebrity-filled soiree took a more sober turn, even as it pulled in top journalists and Washington insiders.

Most of Trump’s administration also skipped the event in solidarity with the president, who has repeatedly accused the press of mistreatment. The president used his campaign-style gathering to again lambast the media.

“I could not possibly be more thrilled than to be more than 100 miles away,” he told a crowd in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, calling out The New York Times, CNN and MSNBC by name.

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What the White House Correspondents’ Dinner will do in POTUS’ absence – Jeff Guo Apr 28, 2017, 12:10pm EDT

Washington, DC’s most glamorous weekend, explained.

The annual White House Correspondents’ Dinner is happening again Saturday, and it’ll be, well, something else. For the past eight years, the dinner has marked a weekend of celeb-studded parties feting President Barack Obama (and, nominally, the press). But with Donald Trump in the Oval Office, the forecast is decidedly less glamorous — starting with the main event, which is expected to strike a more serious tone this year in the absence of its guest of honor.

President Trump, who is supposed to be the star of the night, announced in February that he would not attend, breaking a longtime Washington tradition. (The last president to skip the dinner was Ronald Reagan, who was recovering from a gunshot wound to the lung.) Instead, Trump plans hold a rally in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. By the time journalists and politicians and celebrities assemble at the Washington Hilton on Saturday, the president will be 120 miles away, celebrating his first 100 days in office with some of his most fervent supporters.

It’s not hard not to read the trip, which Trump announced just last Saturday, as an effort to counterprogram a weekend traditionally devoted to celebrating political journalists — a group with whom the president has repeatedly clashed throughout this past year. Trump often complains about his negative coverage, and once called the media the “enemy of the American people.”

Trump has an awkward history with the White House Correspondents’ Dinner that reaches back to 2011, when he was subjected to a humiliating roast by President Obama. According to one narrative (which Trump disputes), that evening was a formative moment for the hotel mogul, inflaming his political ambitions and setting him on a path that would eventually lead to him the White House.

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Joel McHale’s top 10 White House Correspondents’ Association Dinner lines – By JONATHAN TOPAZ | 5/3/14 11:25 PM EDT

Actor and comedian Joel McHale is pictured. | AP Photo

| AP Photo

Joel McHale got laughs — and some groans — during his White House Correspondents’ Association Dinner speech, in which he took shots at President Barack Obama, potential 2016 presidential candidates and the political media. The comedian, who appears on the NBC series “Community” and hosts “The Soup” on E! Network, joked with the crowd at the Washington Hilton on Saturday night after the president’s own speech. Here are ten of McHale’s best lines:

1. “Mr. President — or, as Paul Ryan would call you, another inner city minority taking advantage of the federal government to feed and house your family.”

2. “It’s a thrill to be in Washington D.C., the city that started the whole crack-smoking mayor craze.”

(VIDEOS: White House Correspondents’ Dinner)

3. “It’s crazy to think that Joe Biden is only one heartbeat away from no one taking him seriously as president.”

4. “I promise tonight will be amusing and over quickly, just like Chris Christie’s presidential bid.”

5. “Hillary Clinton has a lot going for her as a candidate … as our female president, we could pay her 30 percent less.”

(PHOTOS: White House correspondents’ dinner red carpet)

6. “It’s good to see that White House press secretary and boy detective Jay Carney is here.”

7. On Obama’s humor: “My favorite bit of yours was when you said you would close the detention facility at Guantanamo Bay – that was hilarious.”

8. “Just because Morgan Freeman has played the president a few times, it doesn’t mean you have to look like him.”

(Also on POLITICO: Obama’s top 10 lines)

9. “Bill O’Reilly, Megan Kelly and Sean Hannity are the Mount Rushmore of keeping old people angry.”

10. “Have you watched the news? Not CNN, I mean the real news.”

Read more: http://www.politico.com/story/2014/05/joel-mchales-top-10-white-house-correspondents-association-dinner-lines-106318.html#ixzz30iYLgqam