While the folks attending the WH Correspondent’s Dinner call it a celebration of the first amendment, the staff at the WH is calling it something else, and they won’t be attending.
Trump is not only making America great again, but he’s also reshaping, or bringing into line, a rouge, undisciplined and unprofessional press corp. And he doesn’t even need to be in the room to slap them on the hand.
Here’s how the reporters at NY Mag see the unorthodox move:
Last month, President Donald Trump announced that he planned to skip the White House Correspondents’ Dinner. White House Correspondents’ Association head Jeff Mason responded by saying that the event would happen with or without the traditional presidential headliner: “[The dinner] has been and will continue to be a celebration of the First Amendment and the important role played by an independent news media in a healthy republic.” In what could be interpreted as a grim indicator of the health of our republic, the White House has announced that none of its staff will attend the event “in solidarity” with their boss.
This is great! There’s nothing like a good scolding from the press secretary to put a fine point on previous bad, press corp behavior.
“The staff is standing in solidarity with the president, who has been treated unfairly,” said Press Secretary Sean Spicer. “We hope, including the president, that things improve and we can attend next year.”
FOX published the comments of the prez. of the WHCA:
Reuters’ Jeff Mason, the president of the WHCA, said in a statement that the organization “regrets” the White House staff’s decision “very much,” and added that Trump, Vice President Mike Pence and “White House staff continue to be welcome to join us at this dinner.”
And did you know this? The dinner raises funds to grow more liberal journalists?
Proceeds from the WHCA dinner go toward journalism scholarships and awards. However, some had criticized the lavish nature of the gala in recent years, claiming that it showed the press to be unduly obsequious to Washington’s power players.