Trump assails White House Correspondents' Association amid Michelle Wolf controversy

The White House Correspondents' Association is the newest front in President Donald Trump's long-running war with the...

Posted: Apr 30, 2018 2:05 PM
Updated: Apr 30, 2018 2:05 PM

The White House Correspondents' Association is the newest front in President Donald Trump's long-running war with the media.

Twenty-four hours after comedian Michelle Wolf ripped into Trump and his aides on national television, Trump said the annual correspondents' dinner was "an embarrassment." He called Wolf's stand-up act "filthy."

"Put Dinner to rest, or start over!" he tweeted.

That's unlikely to happen. But the association did issue a rare statement on Sunday night expressing regret about Wolf's performance.

The association's president, Margaret Talev, did not apologize, as some Trump allies and Washington journalists wanted, but she said the roast wasn't in keeping with the group's mission.

"Last night's program was meant to offer a unifying message about our common commitment to a vigorous and free press while honoring civility, great reporting and scholarship winners, not to divide people," Talev said. "Unfortunately, the entertainer's monologue was not in the spirit of that mission."

But others are defending Wolf and saying she spoke truth to power. The debate is a microcosm of ongoing arguments over the proper tone of Trump White House criticism.

Wolf's raunchy routine, which included jabs at White House press secretary Sarah Sanders, counselor to the president Kellyanne Conway and the news media itself, was met with a mixture of laughter and uncomfortable silence from the audience of journalists and guests.

Come Sunday morning, there was lots of second-guessing. One side bemoaned liberal intolerance. The other side assailed conservative victimhood. Outrage over Wolf's jokes about Sanders was met with criticism of Sanders' performance at the briefing room podium.

Fox News' Ed Henry, NBC News' Andrea Mitchell and other prominent correspondents called on the association to apologize for the most controversial portions of Wolf's act.

But Talev stopped short of apologizing in an appearance on CNN's "Reliable Sources."

She acknowledged that "the comedian reflects on the press corps, but I don't think that the comedian speaks for the press corps."

Talev, a Bloomberg News correspondent who doubles as a CNN analyst, said she had one regret: "To some extent, those 15 minutes" of comedy "are now defining four hours of what was a really wonderful, unifying night. And I don't want the cause of unity to be undercut."

Talev also pointed out that comedians routinely aim to shock and surprise. "Comedy is meant to provoke thought and debate. And it certainly has done that," she said.

Talev's Sunday night email to members indicated that changes could be afoot. She said she and SiriusXM's Olivier Knox, the association's next president, "are committed to hearing from members on your views on the format of the dinner going forward."

Trump's tweet came about half an hour later.

"The White House Correspondents' Dinner was a failure last year, but this year was an embarrassment to everyone associated with it," he wrote.

Trump chose to skip both dinners, breaking with decades of presidential precedent, and instead hold a political rally.

The dinner's organizers describe it as a celebration of the First Amendment.

Trump's Sunday night tweet was also notable because he didn't call out Wolf by name -- he only said "the filthy 'comedian' totally bombed."

Trump added, "she couldn't even deliver her lines -- much like the Seth Meyers weak performance."

Meyers was the comedian at the association's 2011 dinner. That was the time Trump attended the dinner as a guest of The Washington Post. Both Meyers and President Barack Obama harshly criticized Trump in their remarks. The dinner has since been cited as a motivating factor for Trump's 2016 run for office.

Terre Haute
Clear
61° wxIcon
Hi: 76° Lo: 54°
Feels Like: 61°
Robinson
Clear
56° wxIcon
Hi: 75° Lo: 52°
Feels Like: 56°
Indianapolis
Clear
61° wxIcon
Hi: 73° Lo: 53°
Feels Like: 61°
Rockville
Partly Cloudy
57° wxIcon
Hi: 76° Lo: 52°
Feels Like: 57°
Casey
Clear
63° wxIcon
Hi: 74° Lo: 52°
Feels Like: 63°
Brazil
Clear
60° wxIcon
Hi: 76° Lo: 53°
Feels Like: 60°
Marshall
Clear
61° wxIcon
Hi: 74° Lo: 51°
Feels Like: 61°
Another Nice Night
WTHI Planner
WTHI Temps
WTHI Radar

WTHI Events

 

In Case You Missed It

${article.thumbnail.title}

Trace Adkins: The Way I Wanna Go Tour

${article.thumbnail.title}

SCAM ALERT: Avoid phony Amazon calls

${article.thumbnail.title}

SCAM ALERT: Beware of knock-off car seats

${article.thumbnail.title}

SCAM ALERT: Fake change-of-address websites

${article.thumbnail.title}

SCAM ALERT: Social media influencer ruse

Image

Police make arrests in deadly shooting case

${article.thumbnail.title}

SCAM ALERT: Fraudsters claim Apple iCloud breach to steal your info

${article.thumbnail.title}

SCAM ALERT: Schemes target military families

${article.thumbnail.title}

SCAM ALERT: Avoid Zoom phishing

Image

SCAM ALERT: Rental car shortage leads to phony deals

Illinois Coronavirus Cases

(Widget updates once daily at 7 p.m. CT)

Cases: 1389443

Reported Deaths: 25592
CountyCasesDeaths
Cook55642910467
DuPage924131318
Will769631033
Lake683861018
Kane59457808
Winnebago34140507
Madison30959526
McHenry29200295
St. Clair28348519
Peoria23455343
Champaign21112155
Sangamon19103240
McLean18560188
Tazewell17232305
Rock Island15247329
Kankakee14562217
Kendall1328599
LaSalle12789250
Macon10998211
DeKalb10123121
Vermilion10035143
Adams8694127
Williamson7609134
Whiteside7199174
Boone683878
Ogle621183
Grundy598778
Clinton578991
Coles5774100
Knox5647154
Jackson510165
Henry507970
Livingston489991
Woodford484482
Stephenson482785
Macoupin478388
Effingham476972
Franklin454278
Marion4515117
Jefferson4424122
Monroe438694
Lee419354
Randolph416587
Fulton405359
Logan398364
Morgan393482
Christian383975
Montgomery379374
Bureau378484
Fayette322955
Perry320360
Iroquois314167
McDonough291051
Jersey271752
Douglas260736
Saline260457
Lawrence241127
Shelby232838
Union228241
Crawford214525
Bond208724
Cass203527
Ford189048
Warren184349
Clark183933
Jo Daviess182724
Pike182153
Wayne181253
Hancock180931
Carroll178537
Edgar177040
Richland176940
White170626
Washington164825
Moultrie163128
De Witt157229
Mason154245
Piatt152414
Clay149743
Mercer149334
Johnson148116
Greene145234
Massac135940
Wabash135612
Cumberland130219
Menard125012
Jasper116718
Marshall108119
Hamilton84116
Schuyler7817
Brown7326
Pulaski7007
Stark64824
Edwards57712
Calhoun5302
Henderson52814
Scott4891
Putnam4863
Alexander47411
Gallatin4704
Hardin39112
Pope3284
Unassigned512433
Out of IL350

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

(Widget updates once daily at 8 p.m. ET)

Cases: 751526

Reported Deaths: 13799
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion1033281788
Lake557151010
Allen41710692
St. Joseph36998565
Hamilton36604417
Elkhart29413461
Tippecanoe22914227
Vanderburgh22559400
Porter19359326
Johnson18477389
Hendricks17689317
Clark13228195
Madison13158344
Vigo12625253
LaPorte12420221
Monroe12211176
Delaware10968198
Howard10337225
Kosciusko9630121
Hancock8577147
Bartholomew8172157
Warrick7860156
Floyd7812180
Grant7242179
Wayne7162201
Boone6972103
Morgan6765141
Dubois6221118
Marshall6211116
Cass6017110
Henry5902110
Dearborn589878
Noble581688
Jackson509176
Shelby501796
Lawrence4745122
Gibson445094
Clinton442755
Harrison441775
DeKalb439885
Montgomery438490
Whitley406643
Huntington403181
Steuben400259
Miami395269
Jasper388654
Knox376391
Putnam373260
Wabash362383
Ripley347270
Adams345555
Jefferson336186
White332253
Daviess3033100
Wells295381
Decatur289892
Greene286885
Fayette284864
Posey273835
LaGrange273172
Scott270156
Clay267148
Washington246136
Randolph244783
Jennings235349
Spencer234631
Starke228058
Fountain221048
Sullivan214643
Owen212158
Fulton203042
Jay200932
Carroll193720
Orange188255
Perry187237
Rush175926
Vermillion174844
Franklin170335
Tipton166446
Parke149616
Pike138134
Blackford136232
Pulaski120747
Newton114336
Brown104243
Crawford102516
Benton101914
Martin91715
Warren84015
Switzerland8148
Union72810
Ohio57911
Unassigned0420