When Conan O’Brien finishes his prep work for headlining the White House Correspondents Dinner later this week there’s one performer he’ll leave off his crib sheet–Don Imus.
The veteran morning radio show host handled the 1996 Radio and Television Correspondents Dinner, during which the shock jock seized on President Bill Clinton’s philandering ways and the First Lady’s connection to the Whitewater investigation.
Polite D.C. circles were shocked, shocked by Imus’s routine, and the talker took a pop culture beating as a result. Imus reflected on that ugly reception with The New York Post.
They didn’t like being made fun of, but I didn’t give a s–t,” he says. “I did not then, and do not now, give a f–k what they think.
When comedian Stephen Colbert took it to President George W. Bush a decade later at the 2006 White House Correspondents Dinner the reaction was far more positive.
Can you imagine any comic today targeting President Barack Obama with similar no holds barred jokes? Any chance O’Brien echoes a fraction of that “fight the power” intensity during Saturday’s dinner performance?