tv MSNBC Special Coverage White House Correspondents Association Dinner MSNBC April 30, 2016 6:00pm-7:01pm PDT
♪ ♪ thanks for being with us on this saturday night. i'm craig melvin, coming to you live from washington, d.c., here in the nation's capital, all eyes are on this room. this is the washington hilton, the annual white house correspondents' dinner under way as we speak. tonight's dinner, president obama's eighth and final as comedian in chief. and in addition to the blue chip journalists who cover d.c. politics, there are a slew of famous people in that room.
celebrities like jeff goldblum like you see there, and donald trump's son. kerry washington in that room, kendall jenner, also if attendance. 2016 presidential hopeful bernie sanders in the crowd as well. we caught up with a lot of folks on the red carpet. we will bring you those interviews over the next two hours or so. and we know that president obama will be self-deprecating tonight. he'll take a few swipes at the press corps, and if past years are any indication, he'll let loose on some politicians in and outside that room as well. we expect one target will likely be the republican presidential front-runner himself. >> all kidding aside, obviously we all know about -- your credentials and breadth of experience. for example, seriously, just recently in an episode of "celebrity apprentice" at the
steakhouse the men's cooking team 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 little john or meatloaf, you fired gary busey. and these are the kind of decisions that would keep me up at night. >> perhaps not surprising, donald trump passed on an invitation to this year's dinner. and the foreground there, south carolina senator tim scott, having a conversation with somebody who looks like he might
be famous or important as well. lots of conversations in that room tonight between folks who would never talk to each other outside that room. we'll spend some time talking about what they're talking about. mr. obama expected to take the mic just after 10:00. when he's done, he'll laugh politely as larry willmour, host of the "tonight show" and comedy central. this much we know to be true, he likes to tell jokes, he usually kills it at this thing and this is his last rodeo, so get your popcorn ready. >> these days, the house republicans actually give john boehner a harder time than they give me. which means orange really is the new black. >> supreme court ruled that the donor who gave ted cruz $6 million was just exercising free speech. >> yeah, the kind of speech like
this. i just wasted $6 million. >> you remember the translator from last year. we have an a-list panel standing by with some perspective as things kick off here in washington. including political comedian scott blakeman and msnbc.com senior editor beth fuey, arise 360 anchor, lola okinake and nancy giles and lola i'll pronounce your name correctly in just a second. i butcher it every time. we brought them in to talk about the countless possibilities that tonight can bring in just a moment. but first, let's get to the red carpet. just outside the washington hilton, where we find msnbc.com's adam howard. this is always a big deal in an around d.c. every year. but tonight, especially huge given that it's president obama's last dinner before
leaving the oval. >> that's right. i think for a lot of folks, this one is a little bit bittersweet. everybody knows that barack obama is a really great sort of red light performer when it comes to this dinner. he's always sort of delivered the jokes like you said. but i think a lot of folks, and this has been reflected in the polls as we've seen lately, president obama's approval rating has ticked up. i think a lot of people are starting to take a second look at his legacy. and i think the way that this 2016 campaign is unfolded with a lot of bitterness and acrimony, a lot of celebrities and famous figures are starting to feel a little bit nostalgic for barack obama's cool demeanor. i talked to these people tonight and they shared memories of what they're going to miss about president obama. >> i know this family. i think they're fantastic. i actually helped campaign for him. i think that he has done an incredible job in the platforms
that he's wanted to advance. but there are some things that we still need to address. >> i'm glad we're here. it's a great honor and a privilege. i love him. and love him as a president. and if i get a chance to shake his hand, i'll thank him profusely. >> bittersweet. bittersweet. and i'm sorry to see them go. they absolutely represented the usa. >> he's been great on science and climate change, everybody. he has fought that fight as hard as he could. >> he's a great president, i mean for me, like what i, i've been -- like i've been here in america the whole time he's been president. and the perspective that people have also outside of america is much better than any other president that i've been around. >> i think people will miss his -- what are people going to miss most? i think they're going to miss him and everything that he brought to the white house.
to his politics. i think he has a great balance of service to the community, really giving back. >> so you see a lot of people are sort of emotional about barack obama, sort of waning days here in the white house. tonight is going to be about laughs, but i think also to a certain degree it's going to be about sort of paying homage to a president who a lot of people think sometimes doesn't get his due. >> adam, i understand that you also spent some time talking to, to one of donald trump's sons. what did he tell you? >> that's true. so even though donald trump wasn't here, he was definitely the elephant in the room. and two of his sons were here, eric trump and donald trump junior. i spoke to them about the woman card or the women's card. which donald trump brought up this past week. and it's sort of his latest controversy. and they had some interesting words in defense of their dad. >> he's been that way for 20
years, he hasn't thought about those things, he'll go on his friend howard stern and do a comedic sketch that is then used against him. >> yes, so you know, they were quick to come to his defense. you know, that's sort of i guess what they've been doing on the stump for a while now. and they both seem really confident. their dad has been on an incredible run of victories. they both were very excited to talk about how he's doing in the polls. and how he's doing in the delegate count. but then when i asked him about how he's performed with women, neither of them really had an exactly convincing answer. they reference the fact that he's come back in the polls a bit. >> adam howard for us on the red carpet at the white house correspondents' dinner tonight. adam, thank you. let's talk about what's going to likely go down inside that room tonight. you would have to believe that president obama will spend the lion's, i shouldn't say the lion's share, but will probably spend a disproportionate amount
of the speech going after perhaps donald trump, perhaps ted cruz. going after perhaps the circus that has been the contest so far. on both sides, maybe. >> i think also what he's going to do, as was said, it's the last one he's doing. think he's going to look back on the eight years, he may be doing some of that. i hope he brings up trump. i think this will be the most trump-heavy dinner since 2011, which you showed. as an american, i appreciate president obama being a great president, as a comedian he is the only president -- there have been witty presidents, presidents quick on their feet -- he's a great comedian. remember the height of the birther insanity. in two minutes he took trump down, seth myers was great, too. that effectively took care of trump. some people say that moment was what crystallized trump's desire to be taken seriously and run for president, too. >> i want to come back in a second to what it is that makes this president so dog gone good in situations like this. with regards to his comedy. i know that you haven't been to
the actual dinner. but you spent a lot of time at the parties. and that's really -- truth be told, that's where a lot of these folks show up. >> yes. i mean it's a huge networking event. people like to schmooze, it's called the nerd prom for a reason. d.c. folks who aren't used to getting as glamorous as the folks in hollywood get to dress up and look pretty. it's become the must-attend event in washington, d.c. you have you had so seen people clamoring to get into the google party last night. it was insane. i happened to be on the vip elevator with helen mirren, i don't know how. >> the dame. >> dame helen mirren. it was brought to my attention that the dame showed up tonight -- >> with a fitting tribute for prince. purple dress. the symbol as well. that's, she looks fantastic, doesn't she. >> she never disappoints, she's quite dry-witness ted.
the think that makes president obama so great on the stage is he's self-deprecating and he's also quick-witted, he's sharp and crisp. >> nancy have you been to the dinner? >> well the first thing i want to say is everybody in washington, you look fabulous, okay? i'm wearing black gloves to try to like you know -- glamour it up. i have to say, craig, no. and although people have mentioned this is a very bittersweet final white house correspondents' dinner, for me it's a bitter one. because i've never been invited and i've never gotten there. lola, i was not at the google party. i'm even here all by myself in new york. you guys are out there in d.c. in the same room. i'm like talking to myself. google -- googling over here, you know. nobody to talk to. but i'm happy to be part of such a great evening because yes, i agree with everything everybody said. he has a great comedic timing, the president, the whole family, they're really funny.
naturally funny people. and i have to say that that correspondents' dinner 2011, when he took down donald trump that way, it was an amazing week. scott referred to it, because at the beginning of that week, donald trump was again demanding to see the president's transcripts and all that jazz. and the president was like, the birth certificate. and he said we have bigger things to worry about. as it turned out, saturday night was the correspondents' dinner and sunday was when is osama bin laden was killed. an amazing feat going on right in front of us. demonstrating the level of cool that our guy, the president has been. >> craig, i also want to say, think about the fact that there's going to be a lot more edge to this dinner for the president when it comes to trump. the notion, he's been quite, quite blunt about it when asked. the notion of donald trump potentially replacing him as president. the man who questioned his birth certificate, questioned his basically fitness or ability to
serve in the white house. he has, he has been very candid that he thinks donald trump has no business being anywhere near the white house. >> so this, this the jokes that he's going make about donald trump are going to be funny. but they're going to be laced with an edge that i think is going to be very noticeable. >> it's low-hanging fruit. come on, this is a man who told the country that he is well-endowed and his hands are not indicative of the size of his member. >> ewwww. big ewww. >> nancy, i'm sorry, but it's true, it happened. >> i know. >> first of all i would love to say to nancy in new york and nancy and i have worked together many times. i've been alone in new york and i'm never invited to party, either. so true, comedians used to take serious politicians and try to make fun of them. now the politicians are the comedians trying to make sense of things. >> this entire election cycle is such an over-the-top farce, it will be extremely difficult for him to be funnier than everything we've seen in the past few months. >> i just want to jump in and
say one thing, so many people have come up to me and said wow, this presidential campaign, lots of material, huh? and i've said, you know, not really. because a lot of the stuff that's being said, while comedic and crazy. isn't funny. it's like it's deadly serious. and i'm having a hard time processing some of it and trying to turn it into humor when mostly i'm, my heart is palpy tating with fear. >> we're going take a quick break here. i want our audience to know something. full disclosure here, we offered to fly nancy giles down here first class. >> no no. >> and put her up in a very nice hotel. >> no. >> no? >> if that really happened, no one called nancy. >> this is a good dime to take a quick break. we will take a quick break. and come back, a special live coverage of the white house correspondents' dinner continues, the speculation about who will in the president's line of fire in tonight's speech.
we'll continue that and take you back to the red carpet as well. and a look at this year's hosts, comedy central's larry wilmore has what whole heck of a lot in common with president obama. he'll spend a fair amount of his speech roasting the president and spend a fair amount of his speech talking about the circus we've all been covering for the last few months. one more telling the hollywood report reporter, that writing a donald trump joke, not as easy as you might think but he's got a few in his back pocket. wanda sykes, she took on president obama at his very first white house correspondents' dinner back in 2009. you remember this. >> but this is amazing, you know, the first black president. i know you're biracial. but the first black president. proud to be able to say that. you know the first black president. well, that's unless you screw up.
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what's recommended for me. x1 makes it easy to find what blows you away. call or go online and switch to x1. only with xfinity. why don't you get a drink with mitch mcconnell, they ask. really? why don't you get a drink with mitch mcconnell. >> that was, that was one of my favorite lines from two years ago, by the way. president obama there taking aim at then senate minority leader mitch mcconnell, at the 2013 speech at the white house correspondents dinner. tonight commander-in-chief's last dance. bringing back the panel now. scott, let me start with you. since you're our comedic expert for the evening. this president's style. how would you characterize it?
how would you describe it? what separates him from others? >> when he leaves office, he could be the first president to go on tour with a comedy act. he has all the chops. >> i'm a comedian. i've seen so many of the dinners over and over again, i laugh every time. what we saw earlier, it's not -- i've written for politicians and, they can't deliver lines. it's not just delivering the lines, he just his whole persona, the way he took down trump, with deadpan, the timing. and he's very, very edgy, as a comedian. and the last couple of years, as president, he's been incorporating more of that edge. and tonight i can't wait. >> nancy, one of the things that i've always enjoyed about president obama's delivery, is when he says something that he thinks is really funny, at the end, he laughs at himself. >> i love that there's that pause, look, he lays a line out. to echo what scott was saying,
the timing is exquisite and he's very low-key. but he'll lay out the line, kind of hear it, think about it and go, he he he. it's really fun to just watch him appreciate his own comedy. i mean it's a funny thing. having had, an acting career at one point, a lot of dramatic actors, the two things that they want to be are funny, they want to do comedy and they want to sing, right? and many times some of these actors can do neither. and this is a president who really can do both. i still think about him at the apollo theater sort of laying into you know, "let's stay together. "and it's like, what? he's so talented and i think it stems from this biracial guy really being relaxed in his own skin, you know? >> we should note that we've got vice president bide tln talking to -- biden talking to our own savannah guthrie and homeland
security adviser jeh johnson and ken strickland, the bureau chief here in washington, d.c. for nbc news. pete williams, our justice correspondent also at that table. that's careerly the nbc news area. >> it must be nice. >> it must be nice. >> you see who's working tonight, though, right? >> that's your, i interrupted you, you were about to jump in and say something? >> you also get the sense that president obama genuinely has a good time at this event. sometimes when you watch previous presidents, it looks like they were dragged there. that they were they looked like they were getting a root canal. he actually seems to be enjoying himself. and he's actually really involved in the process. not at the beginning, but he essentially has given, they receive i think anywhere from two to 300 jokes, whittle them down to about 20 to 25, he goes in with a fine-tooth comb. picks through them and decides what works for him, what doesn't work for him.
changes language all the way until he hits the stage. >> and interestingly, he's also still president, as nancy pointed out, he was playing the capture of bin laden as he's working on bits. incredible. >> talk about multitasking. >> the other thing that's interesting is that president obama is not known to love the press. he does not necessarily have a great relationship with the press. there's a lot of contention between the press and the white house. i mean, all the time. i mean the president always try to bypass the press, get their message out this president has been as aggressive about that as anybody else. apparently for one night he can lay it aside and appreciate what this dinner is about and what the press corps who cover him try to do every day. >> one of the things that he always has done. at looeast the last seven, he's always sort of ended the night with a tribute to the press corps. >> to acknowledge they have a job to do and it's not an easy job. >> to go out of his way to acknowledge those who do it in very dangerous parts of the world as well. michelle obama there, having a
conversation on the dais, that looks like mr. seib, jerry seib from "the wall street journal." >> the hair is fabulous. it is fabulous. >> you've been in that room a number of times. one of the, one of the things that always strikes me is that you see these people, having conversations, we just saw will smith, these folks who are you know, bona fide a-list celebrities. mucking it up. with journalists. what are the conversations about at those tables? >> it's funny, my biggest memory with respect to that is sitting next to lisa jackson, who was the epa administrator under obama, the first one. and it was at a dinner where george clooney came. and she had, lisa jackson had her staffer, her guy, go find george clooney in the crowd and she said to me, let's go watch him. so we went, we went through the hall and her guy had found him.
where he was sitting, we sat there and gaped at him and finally lisa jackson went over and introduced herself. she was as star-struck as anybody and she's a cabinet official for the president. so it has got ton the point. i've been doing this long enough where i remember you didn't get a t of celebrities, 15, 20 years ago. now it's so star-studded. that the people who used to be the stars, the members of congress and the administration are basically second-tier to the -- >> they're b and c-list. >> yeah yeah yeah. whatever. >> and now we've come full circle so the potential probable republican nominee for president comes from the world of entertainment essentially in 2011 i wasn't thinking is he going to run for president, i was thinking, are they going to renew "celebrity apprentice" the worlds have so overlapped, where they're celebrities, it's a little scary. you want people who are prepared and knowledgeable to run the country, not people who had a show for a couple of seasons. >> it was huge, huge. >> i was going it say scott
brings up a really interesting point. which is in its way, i mean nbc, i want to say this nicely -- kind of helped presidential candidate donald trump sort of you know, become a star. i mean he was this celebrity on a quote-unquote hit tv series. and i think that might be one of the few times, except for maybe whatever -- on "love boat" who ran for congress? that somebody from a tv series ended up running for office. >> this is why you're in new york and not here. >> is that why? >> so i really wasn't invited, was i? >> i'm just kidding. >> we have to take a quick break, though. again, president obama's eighth and final white house correspondents dinner that means next year a new face steps up to that mic. the entire "scandal" cast is in a that room. >> say what you will about mr.
trump, he certainly would bring some change to the white house. let's see what we got up there. >> this is jeff goldblum and my wife, emily goldblum. and we're here at the white house correspondents dinner, and we're being watched here on msnbc. >> we love msnbc. >> we love msnbc. jack be nimble, jack knocked over a candlestick onto the shag carpeting... ...and his pants ignited into flames, causing him to stop, drop and roll. luckily jack recently had geico help him with renters insurance. because all his belongings went up in flames. jack got full replacement and now has new pants he ordered from banana republic. visit geico.com and see how affordable renters insurance can be.
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and then of course there's donald trump. donald trump has been saying that he will run for president as a republican, which is surprising, since i just assumed he was running as a joke. donald trump often appears on fox, which is ironic, because a fox often appears on donald trump's head. donald trump said recently he
has a great relationship with the blacks. though unless the blacks are a family of white people, i bet he's mistaken. >> perhaps it's not surprising that donald trump hasn't been back to the white house correspondents' dinner since then. the all-star panel is back, though, political comedian scott blakeman, msnbc.com senior editor beth fooey and arise 360 anchor lola ogunaike. and cbs this morning commentator nancy giles. >> sunday morning. >> what did i say? >> cbs this morning. and it's cbs sunday morning. two different shows. >> here on msnbc. tonight. nancy, let's talk about hosts in the past. we saw seth myers there in 2011. who do you think in terms of hosting, who do you think has hit a home run, who do you think has flopped miserably.
>> seth myers was great and stephen colbert. i think that kind of like turned his whole career around. he was fantastic. the ones that i can think of, flopped, only hung in there a few minutes, but rich little. that was kind of painful. that was not so good. that was, i think w's second-to-last white house correspondents dinner. maybe his last one. i think that larry wilmore tonight will definitely hit a home run. he and the president, there's so many sensibilities that they have in common that i think he's going to be great. >> same age, they both have a daughter starting college in the fall. rick tyler, rick tyler, also an msnbc contributor, but he is probably best known for being one of ted cruz's top aides. ted cruz probably won't escape the wrath. >> ted cruz and carly fiorina
are sitting at a table by themselves. >> looking good, carly. >> knock on the wall, nancy. >> it will be interesting to see, we're talking about donald trump, we know that he likes to tweet late-night. it will be interesting to see if some of the folks targeted in that room react on social media quickly. >> you could rest assured that trump will react quickly, also. and -- >> claims that it doesn't bother him. but clearly everything does. >> it's the epitome of thin skin. >> great set-up material for ted cruz to lambaste the insiders, the washington cartel. all the people he hits, in the same room. >> i've always been confused with that, he talks about the washington insiders -- he's there. he's a senator? doesn't that make him an insider? i'm so confused. >> bernie sanders is also a senator. >> for years.
>> sponsors like nancy's channel. i'm thrilled that bernie is there and, you know, i have a kinship with him, we're nice jewish boys from brooklyn and it's great that he's there. and actually, makes sense that he's at the dinner. very few of the white house correspondents are in the 1%. le >> here's the other dirty little secret of what this thing has turned into. you probably have fewer white house correspondents in that room than people realize. >> the more celebrities you pack in that room, the fewer white house correspondents get in. >> that changed with monica lewinsky. getting her in the room was a huge get and ever since then it became -- >> actually it was fawn hall with oliver north and gary hart with donna rice. >> who's fawn? >> i should have stuck with the original thing. should have stuck with monica lewinsky.
>> you need so say more things like beyonce. >> i'll work on that. >> that was a rush for all these news outlets to get the biggest names they could get. you have everyone in the room from nene leakes. to morgan freeman. >> a real housewife of atlanta is in the room tonight. >> what are we doing wrong. >> somebody who is very hot at that moment is always at the dinner. when the o.j. simpson trial was going on. cato kaelin was the big guest. and greta van sustren's guest. every single attendee at that party, running after him. he was the hottest guest of the night. >> as you can see, president obama has taken his seat there at the dais. it appears as if they are for the most part on schedule inside that room. again we've been told that the president will be delivering his remarks somewhere, somewhere in
the, 10, 20, 10:20 area. and right after that we'll get, we'll get larry wilmore up who will roast the president and larry wilmore as you can see to the far left of your screen seated next to the first lady. a numb of folks have taken out their cell phones, doing what we have all come to do in this country. taking video. epic selfie as well. lots of that going on in that room. >> it's one thing that's so weird to me about, and it's wonderful to have access to taking pictures and photographs. but i remember i was at the president's second inauguration and no, i didn't have seats, i was -- you know, i'm sorry, the first inauguration, i didn't have seats, i was in the crowd what struck me was how many people had their phones up and were taking pictures of stuff and instead of putting the phones down and just like looking at what was going on around them. and many live and present in the
moment. and it's kind of good, but it's kind of sad. i don't like the block between something that's really going on all the time, you know. everything doesn't have to be photographed. it's nice to be there. >> i can't hear you, nancy, i'm sorry. >> are you taking a selfie? >> you've taken 15 or 20. >> as we continue to watch folks make their way around the room talking to old friends, trying to make new friends, vice president biden has been working this room it seems like from the time we got on the air. it seems uncommon to have the vice president of the united states? >> he's a sentimental guy. >> speak of the devil, there he is. >> his last year as vice president. and i think he's definitely got a very soft spot for a lot of folks in that room. >> i'm wondering this hour, larry wilmore as a comedian, i'm nervous, people say this is the toughest gig. i would take issue with that, larry wilmore was quoted as saying he's done strip clubs in
alaska, and that's tougher. it's difficult thing is that as talented as larry wilmore is, he's got his own show four nights a week. only his parents are coming to see larry wilmore. he's going to be great tonight, but it's a cavernous ballroom. 2600 people. the back of the room is in virginia. that's how, you know. and it's very difficult. but again it's not the worst gig. we're talking about him, and you have to kind of -- go up to the line as much as you can. be edgy, provocative, but you can't cross the line into mean and i'm sure larry could do that well. >> i think larry going to push it tonight and i think the president is going to push it tonight. even last year he pushed it with, he's got a bucket list and a list that rhymes with bucket. he was going blue there i expect him to push the envelope tonight. >> and last year's comedian was cecily strong. wanda sykes was in 2009.
they very rarely have women up there. >> and they very rarely have black comedians as well this is carol lee with the "wall street journal." she is president of the white house correspondents association. this is in addition to being the night every year where big-time actors come to washington, hang out with nerds, this is a scholarship gala as well. >> right. >> a ton of money raised for journalist stumts and those students get introduced here. the first lady we're told has a private meeting with these students as well where she congratulates them on this remarkable achievement. so that is what is happening right now. and you can still see a number, you've got to wonder when these people are actually going to eat their food. >> does anybody know what they're eating, by the way? >> the menu? >> i know because it's the same every single year. it's a piece of fillfillet, a le
piece of fish, dollop of mashed poe fatato potatoes, a basket of crackers and the table pays for the wine. they give you some wine to start. if you want any more, the table pays for it. >> so it's a cash bar. >> pretty much. >> what kind of party is that? >> what i'm looking forward to. this is -- by the way, this is what the dinner is all about there are scholarships given and to me celebrities are great, as a journalism major who didn't do anything with it other than being a comedian, the real hero is the journalist in that room and that's really what it's all about. celebrities come and go, but journalists. >> last year there was a terrible story about some journalism students who won the award, who were trying to get into some of the parties, who were continually turned away. >> i couldn't get in, either. but that's a whole different story. when we come back, we've been spending time talking about bernie sanders, he's the only presidential candidate inside
that room. there's bernie being bernie. sans tuxedo. he's not going to wear a fancy tuxedo to the correspondents' dinner. taking a break from the campaign trail to hang out here in washington, d.c. can he take a joke if it's thrown? we'll talk about that. we'll head back to the live red carpet after this. president obama, set to take the mic, about 30 minutes from now. a lot of folks anticipating what he might say as we head to another break. more proof that our commander-in-chief really enjoys this night. >> in my first term we repealed the policy known as don't ask don't tell. wait though -- in my second term, we will replace it with a policy known as -- it's raining men.
at one point things got so bad the 47% called mitt romney to apologize. of course, we rolled out health care.gov, that could have gone better. in 2008, my slogan was, yes, we can. in 2013, my slogan was, control-alt-delete. >> welcome back to our special live coverage of the white house correspondents' dinner. which is under way as we speak. a live look right now inside the venue, washington's hilton hotel. president obama expected to take the mic for his eighth and final address, he'll be doing that we're told in 15, 20 minutes or so. a lot of a-list celebrities in that crowd.
also a 2016 hopeful as well. vermont senator bernie sanders took some time off the trail to attend tonight's dinner. despite indiana's primary being just three days away. danny freeman is embedded with the sanders' campaign for nbc news, he joins me from the red carpet. i'm curious to get your thoughts on the senator being there tonight, sir. >> well thank you, craig, it's interesting you know, there definitely is an important primary coming up. make no mistake, that's very much on the senator's mind. he's going back to indiana tomorrow for an event. has three rallies on monday ahead of the primary day. but tonight i spoke with senator sanders and spoke with his wife and senior adviser jane sanders, she said they're here on their off day and just want to have a good time. i think that's what you're going to see them prioritize at this white house correspondents' dinner. >> how is he being received? >> you know, it's actually interesting. i've been with senator sanders for a number of months now, whenever he goes to say college
campuses, right, he's always mobbed by these kids who want to take selfies, who want to take videos of the two of them together. it was kind of similar here, senator sanders skipped the red carpet. he went upstairs to a number of the preparties and everywhere he went, he was mobbed by people that wanted to take selfies. you know whether it be journalists or just people that were taking part in the evening's festivities. he definitely got a bit of a hero's welcome. people i think knew that he was as you said the only candidate in attendance tonight it didn't hurt that he also had the secret service with him at all of these preparties. which was an interesting sight as the large men were towering over these groups of people, drinking and dining as they were hoping to get a picture with senator sanders. he was received fairly well as he walked around the halls here, the washington hilton. >> danny freeman on the red carpet, taking a break a bit as well. danny good to see you, having some fun here in washington, d.c. it will be interesting to see if president obama directs any
attention at bernie sanders. even at hillary clinton. >> what's interesting, he's been great, the president, all of them. he was a president being hilarious. last year, literally, you could have given what his routine to any stand-up comedian, it was a political comedian's set. it wasn't a president doing it, and it was incredible to see that. i'm sure he's going to do that again. and i think he's going to look back over the last eight years, he definitely will go down the list of, maybe he'll do all 17 of the original candidates. >> you think he's going to forget about governor christie? >> oh yeah, of course. >> or ben carson. >> the clip you showed about healthcare.gov. that was a great example. once he gets out of this dinner, using humor to reach out to young people. stuff like that contributed, helped him. >> it's a testament to the fact that he's able to poke fun at himself. i expect him to joke about how he's great in the office.
how he was a strapping young man when he came in and did you. >> he's got the gray hair. >> let's talk about the fact that bernie sanders is the candidate that's in there. he always rails against the media. talks about corporate media and the fact that his issues don't get out there because of the corporate media and all the corporations who are telling you what to say on the air and you know, it's clearly he knows very little about the media. however that is what he likes to talk about. the fact that he's spending his offnight as danny described it, his night off the trail with a bunch of journalist sass little weird. >> it does tell you something. and i'll say something else, women are always eviscerated for not dressing the right way. i'm like craig, you're wearing a bow tie, bernie, you couldn't put on a bow tie? come on, bernie sanders. come on. >> i agree with you wholeheartedly. and he's there, he's not stuck in some studio in new york. >> bernie is pretty funny, as i think nancy would agree. i didn't like the tone of it. but in his last debate he was
kind of sarcastic about hillary and wall street. i think he's got -- i don't think we should pick a president about how funny they are. it tells awely bit about what kind of person they are. >> looking at the current crop of contenders, i don't know if next year's going to be nearly as funny, just leave it there. when we come back, what to expect from this year's host, larry wilmore. the comedy central host taking the mike after president obama speaks, following in the footsteps of past hosts like nbc's own seth meyers. >> i am also honored to be performing for those of you here tonight as well as the handful of people watching at home on c-span. c-span is of course the official network for wide shots of empty charles. chairs. >> this is jenna fischer and you're watching live red carpet coverage of the white house correspondents dinner on msnbc. t coming back
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a very good saturday night to you. thanks so much for joining us live from washington, d.c. all eyes on this city's nerd prom as it's called. the annual white house correspondents dinner. celebrities, politicians, some journalists as well, all inside that room. it's a spotlight here in d.c. every year. this year, though, especially special given it is the last time president obama will be speaking at this dinner. we're told that they are moving on schedule for the most part. president obama set to take the mike in roughly, oh, 20, 25 minutes. after the president sits down, larry wilmore will take the
mike. he of course host of comedy central's "the nightly show." let me start with you, nancy. what can we expect from larry wilmore? >> okay, well, he's very, very funny and very, very droll. i think he and the president actually kind of match each other in terms of not only their background but their style. and among other things, i'm sure that larry wilmore will have fun with some of the concepts that i like to have fun with as a comedian, people making assumptions racially when it comes to the president and concepts like the president not being black enough or down with the people or whether he should have represented just black people. all kinds of racial issues i think that will come into play that i think he can handle, lar layrry wilmore, better than anybody else can. al the lines of what wanda sykes was doing but with the extra years the president has gone
through and some of the problems with the house and senate not working with him, i think he'll have a lot of fun with that and be able to make some really interesting racial comments as well. >> before he was comedy central's "the daily show" senior black correspondent, long before that, here's a guy who wrote for "in living color," the executive producer on "the bernie mac show." >> "prince of bel air." >> helped create "black-ish" as well. >> a really quick break here. when we come back, lots more, we'll talk about larry wilmore. we'll also feature president obama's speech uninterrupted as well. the commander in chief expected to speak about 25 minutes from now. our coverage of the 2016 white house correspondents dinner continues right after this. >> an american won the boston marathon for the first time in 30 years.
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thanks so much for staying up with us on this saturday night. i'm craig melvin. you're watching msnbc's special coverage of the white house correspondents' dinner. president obama's eighth and last. the president expected to take the microphone about 15, 20 minutes from now. we've got our eye on the room. we've also spent some time asking people inside that room what they are going to miss most about this president's delivery. >> i know this family. i think they're fantastic. i actually helped campaign for him. i think that he has done an incredible job in the platforms that he's wanted to advance. but there are some things that we still need to address. >> i'm glad we're here. it's a great honor and a privilege. i love hi