President Obama at White House Correspondents Dinner


The President:
All right, everybody,
please have a seat. (applause) My fellow Americans. (laughter and applause) Mahalo! (laughter) It is wonderful to be here at the White House Correspondents’ Dinner. What a week. (laughter) As some of you heard, the state
of Hawaii released my official long-form birth certificate. (applause) Hopefully this puts
all doubts to rest. But just in case there are
any lingering questions, tonight I’m prepared
to go a step further. (laughter) Tonight, for the first time, I am
releasing my official birth video. (laughter) Now, I warn you — (laughter) — no one has seen this footage
in 50 years, not even me. But let’s take a look. (“Secret Birth Video” plays)
(Music “Circle of Life” plays) (applause) Oh, well. Back to square one. (laughter) I want to make clear to the Fox
News table: That was a joke. (laughter) That was not my
real birth video. (laughter) That was a children’s cartoon. (laughter) Call Disney if you
don’t believe me. (laughter) They have the original
long-form version. (laughter) Anyway, it’s good to be back
with so many esteemed guests. Celebrities. Senators. Journalists. Essential government employees. (laughter) Non-essential
government employees. (laughter) You know who you are. (laughter) I am very much looking forward
to hearing Seth Meyers tonight. (applause) He’s a young, fresh face who can
do no wrong in the eyes of his fans. Seth, enjoy it while it lasts. (laughter) Yes, I think it is fair to
say that when it comes to my presidency, the
honeymoon is over. (laughter) For example, some people now
suggest that I’m too professorial. And I’d like to
address that head-on, by assigning all of you some
reading that will help you draw your own conclusions. (laughter) Others say that I’m arrogant. But I’ve found a really great self-help
tool for this: my poll numbers. (laughter) I’ve even let down my key core
constituency: movie stars. Just the other
day, Matt Damon — I love Matt Damon,
love the guy — Matt Damon said he was
disappointed in my performance. Well, Matt, I just saw “The
Adjustment Bureau,” so — (laughter) — right back atcha, buddy. (laughter and applause) Of course, there’s someone who I
can always count on for support: my wonderful wife Michelle. (applause) We made a terrific team at the
Easter Egg Roll this week. I’d give out bags of
candy to the kids, and she’d snatch them right
back out of their little hands. (laughter) Snatched them. (laughter) And where is the National
Public Radio table? (cheering) You guys are still here? (laughter) That’s good. I couldn’t remember
where we landed on that. (laughter) Now, I know you were a little
tense when the GOP tried to cut your funding, but personally
I was looking forward to new programming like “No
Things Considered” — (laughter) — or “Wait, Wait…
Don’t Fund Me.” (laughter) Of course, the deficit
is a serious issue. That’s why Paul Ryan
couldn’t be here tonight. His budget has no
room for laughter. (laughter) Michele Bachmann is here,
though, I understand, and she is thinking about
running for President, which is weird because I
hear she was born in Canada. (laughter) Yes, Michele, this
is how it starts. (laughter) Just letting you know. (laughter and applause) Tim Pawlenty? He seems all American. But have you heard
his real middle name? Tim “Hosni” Pawlenty? (laughter) What a shame. (laughter) My buddy, our outstanding
ambassador, Jon Huntsman, is with us. Now, there’s something you
might not know about Jon. He didn’t learn to speak
Chinese to go there. Oh no. (laughter) He learned English to come here. (laughter and applause) And then there’s a vicious rumor
floating around that I think could really hurt Mitt Romney. I heard he passed universal
health care when he was governor of Massachusetts. (laughter) Someone should get to
the bottom of that. And I know just
the guy to do it — Donald Trump is here tonight! (laughter and applause) Now, I know that he’s
taken some flak lately, but no one is happier, no one
is prouder to put this birth certificate matter to
rest than the Donald. (laughter) And that’s because he can
finally get back to focusing on the issues that matter — like,
did we fake the moon landing? (laughter) What really happened in Roswell? (laughter) And where are Biggie and Tupac? (laughter and applause) But all kidding
aside, obviously, we all know about your credentials
and breadth of experience. (laughter) For example — no,
seriously, just recently, in an episode of
Celebrity Apprentice — (laughter) — at the steakhouse, the men’s
cooking team cooking did not impress the judges
from Omaha Steaks. And there was a lot
of blame to go around. But you, Mr. Trump, recognized
that the real problem was a lack of leadership. And so ultimately, you didn’t
blame Lil’ Jon or Meatloaf. (laughter) You fired Gary Busey. (laughter) And these are the kind of decisions
that would keep me up at night. (laughter and applause) Well handled, sir. (laughter) Well handled. Say what you will
about Mr. Trump, he certainly would bring some
change to the White House. Let’s see what
we’ve got up there. (laughter) (Screens show “Trump White
House Resort and Casino.”) So, yes, this has been
quite a year in politics, but also in the movies. Many people, for instance, were
inspired by the King’s Speech. It’s a wonderful film. (applause) Well, some of you
may not know this, but there’s now a sequel in the
works that touches close to home. And because this is
a Hollywood crowd, tonight I can
offer a sneak peek. So can we show the
trailer, please? Narrator:
The following preview
was begrudgingly approved for all audiences by the President
of the United States. The film advertisement has
been rated U, unwatchable. (Music Playing) The year is 2011. And opposition rises. Political Analyst:
Congressional republicans could force the federal government to
shut down — Narrator:
And the President
must face — Chris Matthews:
And republicans are serious
about an amendment that would eliminate funding — this is
serious business — for the President’s teleprompter! Narrator:
His greatest challenge. (Multiple reporters chatter) From the people who brought you Universal Health Care and the huge backlash to Universal Health Care comes the incredible true story. The President:
As our economy
added another 20 –blaaahhh — to say that, they say that —
doing that will work blah, blah, let’s start over. Savannah Guthrie:
The President has lost his prompter. Joe Lockhart, has
he lost the magic? Joe Lockhart:
Savannah, he’s gone from yes, we can; to no, I can’t. The President:
I can’t get that. I will also — I will also visit
— I will also visit Chile. I will also visit Chile. Okay. Let’s try that again. (laughter) Narrator:
In his darkest hour — Background Voice:
Mr. President, what are you going to do? Narrator: —
the President turned to a man who never let prepared marks stand in his way. (music playing) Vice President Biden:
Axelrod wanted me to use the teleprompter but I told him I’m
much better when I wing it! (Song: “yeah,
baby, I like it raw. “Yeah, baby, I like it raw.) Vice President Biden:
His mama lived in Long Island for ten years or so. God rest her soul. Although she’s — wait,
your mom’s still alive! God bless her soul! Narrator:
And spoke from the heart. (bleep) (applause) Vice President Biden:
I’ve never seen so many damn insurance commissioners. Went to buy a 30-inch
hedge clipper. My, Lord, I’m not that
old — actually, I am. Narrator:
It’s the story of friendship and the power of the human spirit. The President:
He has only two lines! Okay. Vice President Biden:
You’re
making me feel better, buddy. (laughter) Narrator:
But mostly (record needle screech) it’s this – for two hours! Vice President Biden:
And someone we appreciate even more, Natalie Portman. This is not on the teleprompter
but she’s a heck of a lot better lookin’ than Rahm Emanuel! (cheering) Narrator:
This fiscal year join two-time Grammy Award Winner Barack Obama. The President:
This is the coolest weekly address. Narrator:
Renowned vegetable enthusiast, Michelle Obama! First Lady Michelle Obama:
Hey, look, Sam, there’s a carrot! Narrator: And
AMTRAK’s Passenger of the Year three decades running, Joe Biden. Vice President Biden:
There goes Biden again. Narrator:
As the President loses his teleprompter but wins the future. The President:
Thank you! Narrator:
“The President’s Speech.” The President:
My outstanding Vice President, Joe Biden is here. (applause) The President:
Coming to a theater near you! (applause) Let me close
on a serious note. We are having a good time but
as has been true for the last several years, we have
incredible young men and women who are serving in uniform
overseas in the most extraordinary of circumstances
and we — (applause) — we are reminded of their
courage and their valor. (applause) We also need to
remember our neighbors in Alabama and across the South
that have been devastated by terrible storms — (applause) — from last week. Michelle and I were down there
yesterday and we spent a lot of time with some of the folks
who have been affected. The devastation is unimaginable
and it’s heartbreaking and it’s going to be a long road back. And so we need to keep those
Americans in our thoughts and in our prayers. But we also need to stand with
them in the hard months and perhaps years to come. I intend to make sure that the
federal government does that. And I’ve got faith that the
journalists in this room will do their part for the people who
have been affected by this disaster by reporting on their
progress and letting the rest of America know when they
will need more help. Those are stories that need
telling and that’s what all of you do best, whether it’s
rushing to the site of a devastating storm in Alabama,
or braving danger to cover a revolution in the Middle East. You know, in the last months
we’ve seen journalists threatened, arrested,
beaten, attacked, and in some cases even killed
simply for doing their best to bring us the story. To give people a voice. And to hold leaders accountable. And through it all we’ve seen
daring men and women risk their lives for the simple idea that
no one should be silenced. And everyone deserves
to know the truth. That’s what you do. At your best that’s
what journalism is. That’s the principal
that you uphold. It is always important, but it’s
especially important in times of challenge like the moment that
America and the world is facing now. So I thank you for your service
and the contributions that you make. And I want to close by
recognizing not only your service, but also to remember
those that have been lost as a consequence of the extraordinary
reporting that they’ve done over recent weeks. They help, too, to defend our
freedoms and allow democracy to flourish. God bless you! And may got bless the
United States of America! (applause)

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