After a two-year hiatus, the White House Correspondents’ Dinner made its official comeback this weekend with host Trevor Noah. Although this navel-gazing event is stuffed primarily with people who love themselves and the word “SCOOP” more than anything, this year’s installment provided particularly sharp comedic commentary on the state of American media and politics—and an even sharper pang in the hearts of Pete Davidson groupies everywhere.
Noah kicked off the event by thanking the room of political journalists for the “great honor to be speaking at the nation’s most distinguished superspreader event,” before continuing on to roast the living shit out of everyone in his direct line of sight. This notably included Arizona Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (“Who ever thought we’d see the day in American politics when a senator could be openly bisexual, but closeted Republican.”), The New York Times (“You’re some of the most accurate reporting in news. You never fail to write down exactly whatever the police have told you to say. Really powerful.”), Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (“Ron DeSantis is one step ahead [of Trump]. First, you ban the math textbooks, then nobody knows how to count the votes.”) and KellyAnne Conway (“It is risky making jokes these days. I mean, we all saw what happened at the Oscars. I’ve actually been a little worried about tonight. What if I make a really mean joke about Kellyanne Conway… and then her husband rushes up on the stage and thanks me?”).
Not even the current administration was spared from Noah’s rapidfire. Perhaps my favorite moment of the evening was Noah’s flawless dunk on Biden’s uncanny ability to skirt around the topic of student debt cancellation without ever fucking cancelling them!!!
“Dr. Biden kept her teaching career…everyone thinks it’s because she loves teaching, but it’s actually because she’s still paying off her student debt,” Trevor said. “Shoulda voted for Bernie.”
Of Noah’s many burns of the evening, this one seared the most. You’d be crazy not to wonder how Uncle Sanders might have cleaned up this pandemic dumpster fire for students—I’m willing to bet it wouldn’t be by repeatedly pausing student loan repayments and leaving them to loom large over the heads of borrowers everywhere. Both POTUS and FLOTUS managed to laugh at themselves, but Biden hasn’t kept his promise to people seemingly forever burdened by piling and compounding student loans, so I’m not really sure what’s so fucking funny!!
Outside the doors of the contagion gala, Kete (that’s Kim Kardashian and Pete Davidson for those of you who have chosen to ignore tabloid headlines for the last few months) made their long-awaited red carpet debut, only compounding the BDE energy already radiating out of Trevor. Perhaps I’ve fallen for puppet master Kris Jenner’s seamless rollout of press, but I’m deeply obsessed with this couple in, sadly, the most un-ironic way. Even the way Pete positioned himself just behind Kim on the carpet, letting us know he knows who’s in charge, is giving major Wife Guy (and future DILF?). Later, he barricaded her in the back corner of an elevator, using his body as a shield from the paparazzi and making us all horny as hell. Looking as if she recently emerged from an ancient thermal bath, Kim chose to ditch her “Legally Kim” prison reform campaign for an evening in favor of a platinum Balenciaga gown bright to enough to torch the computer screens of her trolls.
Other than these highlights, nothing else at this dinner really mattered. Politicians and competing journalists across the spectrum decided to play nice for an evening for a free meal and a Getty photo with their frenemies. Oh, and Noah ended the dinner on a poetic note—reminding journalists that we are so lucky to have the right to speak truth to power in this country and that we should think hard about how we use it.
“In America, you have the right to seek the truth and speak the truth, even if it makes people in power uncomfortable,” Noah said. “Even if it makes viewers or readers uncomfortable. You understand how amazing that is? I stood here tonight and I made fun of the president of the United States and I’m going to be fine.”
So, there you have it folks. Our Founding Fathers fought for freedom of the press so that I could write about how I want to rail most of the Formula One drivers and fantasize about Pete Davidson. Oh, how lucky we are.