Star-studded gala sees president crack a few jokes
Even though President Barack Obama and his wife can’t wait to get out of the White House, being a lame duck can hurt a guy.
“Last week Prince George showed up to our meeting in his bathrobe,” Obama cracked at the White House Correspondents’ dinner on Saturday night. “That was a slap in the face.”
Obama drew plenty of laughs with his barbed remarks to a ballroom filled with journalists, politicians, and movie and television stars. It was his eighth appearance at the event and his last as president.
“If this material works well, I’m going to use it at Goldman Sachs next year,” Obama said. “Earn me some serious Tubmans.”
The president waxed nostalgic at times. “Eight years ago I said it was time to change the tone of our politics. “In hindsight, I clearly should have been more specific,” he said. And he acknowledged that the years had taken their toll, saying: “I’m gray, grizzled... counting down the days to my death panel.” On the other hand, he pointed out that his approval ratings are up.
“The last time I was this high,” he said, “I was trying to decide on my major.”
When he said he couldn’t explain the rise in his popularity, two photographs appeared on ballroom screens: Donald Trump and Ted Cruz.
Obama took a few more swipes at the presidential race, noting that “next year at this time someone else will be standing here in this very spot, and it’s anyone’s guess who she will be”.
After calling presidential candidate Bernie Sanders the bright new face of the Democratic Party, Obama contrasted the slogan “Feel the Bern” with one he said was rival Hillary Clinton’s: “Trudge Up the Hill.”
Obama said of billionaire businessman and real estate mogul Trump: “He has spent years meeting with leaders from around the world - Miss Sweden, Miss Argentina, Miss Azerbaijan.”
He added: “And there’s one area where Donald’s experience could be invaluable, and that’s closing Guantanamo - because Trump knows a thing or two about running waterfront properties into the ground.”
Turning serious, the president thanked the White House press corps and praised a free press. “I just have two more words to say: Obama out.” With that, he held out the mic and dropped it.