MEDIA/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “The White House staff won’t attend the annual correspondents’ dinner in ‘solidarity’ with President Trump, the White House Correspondents’ Association announced Tuesday [3-20-17].
WHCA president Jeff Mason, a White House correspondent for Reuters, said that the group has worked to build a ‘constructive relationship’ with the president and his staff, something that is possible even with tensions between the administration and the press.
‘We made clear in our meeting tonight that President Trump, Vice President Pence and White House staff continue to be welcome to join us at this dinner,’ he said. ‘Only the White House can speak to the signal it wants to send with this decision.’
Trump announced last month that he would not attend the dinner, amid an ongoing contentious relationship with the media.
The dinner has been a tradition in Washington since 1920. The last president to miss the dinner was Ronald Reagan in 1981, when he was recovering from an assassination attempt. Other presidents to miss the event include Jimmy Carter and Richard Nixon.
The dinner is set for April 29.”
-Jessica Estepa, “White House staff won’t be attending correspondents’ dinner,” USA Today, March 29, 2017