Michelle Wolf came out firing at the White House Correspondents’ Dinner, criticizing Trump administration figures like Sarah Huckabee Sanders (“she burns facts, and then she uses the ash to create a perfect smoky eye”) and political journalists alike (“I think what no one in this room wants to admit is that Trump helped all of you”). Given the severity of her barbs, not everyone was happy with Wolf’s monologue. White House Correspondents’ Association president Margaret Talev weighed in with a statement to the organization’s members Sunday night, saying that Wolf’s jokes were “not in the spirit” of the organization’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. Unfortunately, the entertainer’s monologue was not in the spirit of that mission,” the statement read.
Wolf responded with a photograph taken the night of the event, along with the caption “Not in the spirit of the mission.”
Wolf’s routine, and the WHCD as a whole, also got personal attention from President Donald Trump. Though he did not attend the dinner for the second consecutive year, Trump called this year’s event “a total disaster.”
“The White House Correspondents’ Dinner is dead as we know it,” he tweeted on Monday morning. “This was a total disaster and an embarrassment to our great country and all that it stands for.”
Trump, who became well-known during his presidential campaign for creating vulgar nicknames for his political opponents, referred to Wolf as a “filthy ‘comedian.’” He even compared her unfavorably to Seth Meyers, who hosted the 2011 dinner at which he and President Barack Obama relentlessly roasted Trump (who was actually in the audience that time). Meyers, for his part, was a fan of Wolf’s routine, tweeting, “Few people go to DC and accomplish what they set out to do while staying true to themselves. @michelleisawolf is one of those people.” Check out more polarizing reactions here.
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