Tonight is the annual White House Correspondents’ Association’s annual dinner — aka “Nerd Prom” — and once again, President Donald Trump will not be attending; instead, he’ll be at a campaign rally in Michigan.

Last year, journalists were arguing whether to disinvite the president or just cancel the whole dinner were he to RSVP. Instead, he bowed out and the show went on without him.

Is that really such a big deal? CNN’s Brian Stelter says yes, because, he just knows that while Trump skips out on the dinner he’ll be in Michigan “waging war” on the media that covers him.

Stelter writes:

For a second straight year, President Trump is using the White House Correspondents’ Association’s annual dinner to wage his war on the reporters who cover him.

It would be one thing if he skipped the dinner to oversee crisis response or host a community service event. But instead he is counter-programming the dinner by holding a campaign rally in Washington Township, Michigan. If it’s anything like last year’s rally during the dinner, more media attacks are sure to come.

It means the black tie dinner — billed as a celebration of the First Amendment — will have a slightly different feel.

As one White House correspondent quipped at a Friday evening event, “He’s going to mock us for celebrating ourselves while he’s celebrating himself.”

The black-tie dinner might be billed as a celebration of the First Amendment, but anyone who’s watched it knows it’s a celebration of the White House correspondents in attendance and their chance to show off their celebrity guests on the red carpet.

Stelter continues:

Trump evidently believes it’s politically advantageous to snub the affair and hold a rally instead. “Big crowd tonight, will be live on T.V.,” he tweeted on Saturday morning.

He likes the contrast — pictures of journalists at a fancy party on one side, pictures of his supporters cheering for him on the other side.

So Stelter seems concerned that Trump is going to skip out on a dinner for a hostile press and then “wage war” on journalists at a campaign rally as those journalists walk the red carpet in prom wear.

Wow, it’s too bad Trump is going to miss out on seeing Kathy Griffin, who held up his bloody, disembodied head for a photo shoot, in Oscar de la Renta.


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