As the president skipped the annual White House Press Correspondence Dinner to speak to thousands of his supporters in Michigan, comedian Michelle Wolf ruined the event with the most vulgar comedy set in the events history, shocking reporters and essentially handing Trump a “gift” for his continued jabs at the media.
Trump got on Twitter Monday morning and told the world “’The White House Correspondents’ Dinner is DEAD as we know it,’ the president declared Monday morning on “Twitter”, this was a total disaster and an embarrassment to our great Country and all that it stands for.” He also wrote “’FAKE NEWS is alive and well and beautifully represented on Saturday night!’
In a final tweet on the subject Trump suggested to “put the dinner to rest or start over.”
Many main-stream media figures, who are defiantly not aligned with the president were shocked and actually found themselves defending the Trump administration.
MSNBC host Andrea Mitchell, wrote on her Twitter account that an apology was in order for Sarah Huckabee Sanders who was the victim of many of the vicious attacks.
The general feeling towards Michelle Wolf’s offensive rant was that it ruined the intent of the event which has been held annually since 1914. The purpose of the event is to celebrate the free press and its ability to report on the government. The White House Correspondents’ Association (WHCA) is an organization of journalists who cover the White House and the President of the United States. The WHCA was founded on February 25, 1914 by journalists in response to an unfounded rumor that a United States congressional committee would select which journalists could attend press conferences of President Woodrow Wilson.
CNN reporter Jeff Zeleny lamented that the events that transpired over the weekend did not further the cause of journalism. “So much important and amazing journalism this year — that should be the focus, when truth matters and is needed more than ever. It was an embarrassment in the room and surely to the audience at home”, he tweeted.
Politico’s Tim Alberta made a profound and powerful tweet regarding the disaster that was the 2018 WHPC dinner by tweeting “ Every caricature thrust upon the national press—that we are culturally elitist, professionally incestuous, socioeconomically detached and ideologically biased—is confirmed by this train-wreck of an event”.
NY Times reporter Maggie Haberman wrote that she was impressed by the way Huckabee sat and absorbed Wolf’s insults without walking out, while Associated Press reporter Meg Kinnard said the dinner made the job of journalists much more difficult as far as public trust is concerned.
The president instead of spending Saturday night being berated by a Comedy Central personality chose to speak to the people who elected him in 2016, his supporters. This year Trump went to Michigan to speak to several thousand of his supporters. During the almost two hour long speech the president highlighted some of his economic achievements, including his tax cuts, the record low unemployment among African Americans and Hispanics and the peace that is starting to break out between North and South Korea.
At one point his supporters chanted “Nobel” alluding Trump’s unorthodox methods of diplomacy are worthy of a Nobel Peace Prize.
By Jared Evan