Trump Pals Around With the Media
Something of a truce for the night as president attends his first Gridiron Dinner, drops one-liners
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Mar 4, 2018 6:00 AM CST
President Trump walks across the South Lawn of the White House in Washington with first lady Melania Trump, Saturday, March 3, 2018, as they return from Trump's Mar-a-Lago estate in Palm Beach, Fla.   (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)
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(Newser) – President Trump engaged in a good-natured duel of one-liners with political rivals and the press at the annual Gridiron Dinner, reports the AP, largely putting aside his ongoing criticism of the media Saturday night. "Nobody does self-deprecating humor better than I do. It's not even close," said Trump, who skipped last year's dinner. "I was very excited to receive this invitation and ruin your evening in person. That's why I accepted." The annual dinner of the Gridiron Club and Foundation, now in its 133rd year, traced its history to 1885, the year President Grover Cleveland refused to attend. Every president since has come to at least one Gridiron. "Rest assured, Mr. President, this crowd is way bigger than Cleveland's," Club President David Lightman of McClatchy News told the white-tie audience. Trump's speech lasted more than a half hour and included plenty of one-liners. A sampling:

  • On his son-in-law: "We were late tonight because Jared could not get through security."
  • On VP Mike Pence: "He is one of the best straight men you're ever going to meet ... he is straight. Man." Further, "I really am proud to call him the apprentice."
  • On Attorney General Jeff Sessions: "I offered him a ride over and he recused himself. What are you going to do?"
  • On the New York Times: "I'm a New York icon. You're a New York icon. And the only difference is I still own my buildings."
  • On Steve Bannon: "That guy leaked more than the Titanic."
  • On the media: "I just want to say this, this is one of the best times I've had with the media—this might be the most fun I've had since watching your faces on election night."
Trump wrapped the evening on an upbeat note. "I want to thank the press for all you do to support and sustain our democracy."

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