April 29 (UPI) — For the second year, Donald Trump wasn’t in Washington for the White House Correspondents Dinner, but he was the focus of attention as comedian Michelle Wolf leveled pointed attacks at him and his administration.
On Saturday night, the president was returning from a campaign-style rally in Washington Township, Mich., as the former Daily Show was pointing points jabs at him.
“People call Trump names all the time,” Wolf said. “And look, I could call Trump a racist, or a misogynist, or xenophobic, or unstable, or incompetent, or impotent. But he’s heard all of those and he doesn’t care. So tonight, I’m gonna try to make fun of the president in a new way, in a way that I think will really get him. Mr. President, I don’t think you’re very rich. You might be rich in Idaho, but in New York, you’re doing fine.”
And he added: “Trump is so broke,” she said as part of a call to the attended and response, “he has to fly failed business class.”
Wolf also had attacked, sometimes crudely, his administration, including Vice President Mike Pence, his daughter and senior adviser Ivanka Trump, press secretary Sara Huckabee Sanders, counselor KellyAnn Conway as well as Republicans.
“I had a lot of jokes about cabinet members, but I had to scrap all of those because everybody has been fired,” she said.
Sanders and Conway sat stonefaced at the dinner while Wolf mentioned them.
“I actually really like Sarah. I think she’s very resourceful. [She] burns facts, and then she uses that ash to create a perfect smoky eye. Like, maybe she’s born with it, maybe it’s lies,” Wolf said as a television camera cut to Sanders at the head table.
Mercedes Schlapp, director of strategic communications, and her husband, conservative activist Matt Schlapp was among Trump officials who walked out of ballroom at the Washington Hilton during her routine.
“My wife @mercedesschlapp and I walked out early from the wh correspondents dinner. Enough of elites mocking all of us,” Matt Schlapp posted on Twitter just before 11 p.m. Schlapp is the chairman of the American Conservative Union and his wife, Mercedes, is part of the White House’s communications team.
“It’s why America hates the out of touch leftist media elites,” Mercedes Schlapp wrote later on Twitter afterward.
And former Trump chief of staff Reince Priebus, the butt of a joke, on Twitter called the night an “R/X rated spectacle that started poorly and ended up in the bottom of the canyon. Another victory for @realDonaldTrump for not attending and proving his point once again. The room was uncomfortable. Trump lovers and even a large number of Trump haters were pretty miserable.”
Wolf also directed lines at Democrats, including former presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, and the media
“It is kind of crazy the Trump campaign was in contact with Russia when the Hillary campaign wasn’t even in contact with Michigan. It’s a direct flight. It’s so close,” Wolf said.
And she said about the media: “You guys are obsessed with Trump. Did you used to date him? Because you pretend like you hate him, but I think you love him. I think what no one in this room wants to admit is that Trump has helped all of you.”
Speaker of the House Paul Ryan, who is retiring after this year, appeared in a video message, that included humor, to the scholarship winners at the event and other future journalists.
“There’s so much noise out there, but our republic does not work without an informed electorate,” Ryan said. “Pay attention to the policy, not just the personalities. Look at the human impact, not just the horse race. And above all, challenge yourself to challenge us, those of us in to public office. Because what you do, it really matters. It provides transparency and accountability. Done right, journalism cannot just inform but empower citizens. Of course we don’t always agree on what’s right and what’s fair, but that push and pull, that makes us both better.”
White House Correspondents’ Association president Margaret Talev said, “We reject efforts by anyone, especially our elected leaders, to paint journalism as un-American.
“An attack on one journalist is an attack on us all,” Talev, a Bloomberg reporter and CNN analyst added.
Trump reacted to the two events Saturday, posting Sunday morning on Twitter: “While Washington, Michigan, was a big success, Washington, D.C., just didn’t work. Everyone is talking about the fact that the White House Correspondents Dinner was a very big, boring bust…the so-called comedian really “bombed.” @greggutfeld should host next year! @PeteHegseth”.