Ah, the 2011 White House Correspondents' Dinner — also known by many as the Night President Obama Roasted Donald Trump And Set Trump Off On His Wild Presidential Ride (a notion that the Celebrity Apprentice producer and current president have denied). It's now six years later, and President Donald Trump has announced that he will not be at this year's White House Correspondents' Dinner. So exactly what is Trump doing instead of attending the WHCD?
The president has actually planned a rally in Pennsylvania on the same night as the White House Correspondents' Dinner — although a White House official reportedly told Politico that the two events' overlap in dates was entirely unrelated. Instead, the official said, the rally was about celebrating Trump's first 100 days in office. "The media is trying to make this about them when, respectfully, it has nothing to do with you guys," the official reportedly said. "It’s about focusing on the people."
Oddly enough, however, Trump has recently tried to underplay the importance of his first 100 days in office on social media, despite the emphasis he placed on the 100-day benchmark during his campaign. Just last week, he wrote on Twitter, "No matter how much I accomplish during the ridiculous standard of the first 100 days, & it has been a lot (including S.C.), media will kill!"
Trump first announced that he would not be attending the White House Correspondents' Dinner back in February, tweeting, "I will not be attending the White House Correspondents' Association Dinner this year. Please wish everyone well and have a great evening!" He didn't provide a reason at the time for not attending, and his choice drew swift criticism on social media, with many wondering how the president would handle an evening of roasting.
Trump's rally in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania on April 29 won't be his first as president. In February, just a month after taking office, Trump held a rally in Melbourne, Florida, telling attendees that he wanted to address them "without the filter of fake news," according to ABC News.
"When the media lies to the people, I will never let them get away with it," Trump told the rally crowd in February, according to CNN. "I will do whatever I can so they don't get away with it. They have their own agenda and their agenda is not your agenda."
Considering that the White House Correspondents' Dinner is a celebration of journalists and the media — who Trump has called "the enemy of the American people" in the past — it's perhaps not surprising that Trump has chosen to forego their company and spend time at a celebratory rally instead. So far, it seems like Saturday night will be an evening full of interesting contrasts between both events.