April 28, 2018 4:22 pm
Updated: April 28, 2018 11:21 pm

Trump skips White House Correspondents’ Dinner for 2nd year in a row

Comedian Michelle Wolf hosted the 2018 White House Correspondents' dinner and took jabs at the women in Trump's administration including Kellyanne Conway, Ivanka Trump and Sarah Huckabee Sanders.

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White House aides, reporters and other famous-for-Washington types were set to gather without President Donald Trump to toast press freedom.

It was to be the second White House Correspondents’ Association dinner in a row without the president. Trump posted on Facebook this past week that he would hold a Saturday evening rally in Michigan with his “favorite deplorables” — a term that Democrat Hillary Clinton used in 2016 to describe some of Trump’s campaign supporters.

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The Washington dinner, which once attracted Oscar winners and buzzed-about stars, comes as Trump routinely slams reporters as dishonest and their work as “fake news.”

READ MORE: Donald Trump expecting big, friendly crowd at Michigan rally

Comedian Michelle Wolf was on tap to deliver what’s usually a roast of the president and the press.

“I like making fun of people to their face … more than behind their backs, so it would have been more fun” if Trump were in the audience, Wolf told CBS’ “This Morning Saturday.”

“None of my jokes changed. It’s just nicer to make fun of them when they’re there. I think it’s cowardly not to go.”

Trump’s aides skipped last year’s dinner, when some accompanied Trump to a rally in Pennsylvania where he celebrated his 100th day in office. This year, however, even with Trump out of town, many White House aides were expected to hobnob with the journalists who cover them.

WATCH: Donald Trump skips WH Correspondents’ Dinner, holds rally in Michigan

In 2017, Trump became the first president to skip the event since Ronald Reagan in 1981; Reagan was recovering from an assassination attempt.

— Watch the 2018 White House Correspondents’ Association dinner live on Globalnews.ca or the Global News YouTube channel starting at 9:30 p.m. ET

© 2018 The Canadian Press

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