Biden White House Correspondents’ Association Dinner Speech: Key Takeaways

Comedian Trevor Noah brought the roast to the White House Correspondents’ Association dinner as he returned for the first time in two years after a pandemic-induced hiatus – taking aim at outlets including CNN, Fox News and Axios.

The big picture: The WHCA headliner, who has also skewered political figures on both sides of the aisle, began by saying it was a “great honour” to be at “the most distinguished broadcast event of the country” — noting that NIAID Director Anthony Fauci had dropped out of the event. “That should have been a pretty big sign,” Noah said.

What else does he say:

CNN was hit with several digs – starting with Noah telling dinner attendees to relax and get comfortable. But no also comfortable, Jeffrey Toobin,” he said of the outlet’s host, who apologized after he was caught exposing himself during a Zoom call.

  • “Where’s Jeffrey Zucker?” Noah asked the former CNN boss, who resigned from the company in February.
  • “‘Jeff got fired because he tried to keep his relationship at work a secret, which is weird, because if he really didn’t want anyone to know him, he could have made a show out of it. on CNN Plus!”

“Fox News is kind of like a Waffle House,” Noah said. “It’s relatively normal in the afternoon, but as soon as the sun goes down. …”

  • Noah noted that the network “asked about” President Biden’s son, Hunter Biden.
  • “I think people need to be held accountable if they use their dad’s name to get ahead in life and I can’t think of anyone better to ask about that than Peter Doocy,” he told about the Fox News White House correspondent, whose father is “Fox & Friends” co-host Steve Doocy.

On Biden, Noah said he wondered why he was chosen to host this year’s WHCD. “But then I was told that you get your highest approval ratings with a biracial African standing next to you,” he said, addressing the president.

  • “Since you took office, things are already looking up,” Noah told Biden. “Gas is up, rent is up, food is up. Everything…”
  • Biden saying Russian President Vladimir Putin can’t stay in power “was very upsetting for Russia, until someone explained to them that nothing Biden wants is actually being done,” Noah said. .

Referring to actor Will Smith slapping Chris Rock at the Oscars, Noah said he was “a little worried” about such an incident at the WHCA dinner.

On Senator Kyrsten Sinema (D-Arizona), Noah said, “Who ever thought we would see the day when a senator could be openly bisexual but a closeted Republican?”

Noah praised Axios award-winning journalist Jonathan Swan for his interviews.

  • “People always ask how Jonathan Swan gets all these… interviews. I’ll tell you how: it’s the Aussie accent,” Noah said.
  • “An interview with Jonathan Swan is like being questioned by a koala”, before launching into an imitation of the journalist:

Editor’s Note: This article has been updated with new details.

Andrew B. Reiter