There was insult aplenty at Saturday night's White House Correspondents' Dinner thanks to headlining comedian Joel McHale.
Spurring a mixture of laughter and groans from his audience, McHale succeeded in creating an awkward mood. Here is a mix of his jokes that brought scattered laughter and plenty of jeers.
Good evening, Mr. President — or as Paul Ryan refers to you, yet another inner-city minority relying on the federal government to feed and house your family.
I’m a big fan of President Obama. I think he’s one of the all-time great presidents — definitely in the top 50. Please explain that to Jessica Simpson. You’re right. That was low.
[I]t’s amazing that you can still bring it with fresh, hilarious material. And my favorite bit of yours was when you said you’d close the detention facility at Guantanamo Bay. That was a classic. That was hilarious, hilarious. Still going.
Mr. President, you have to admit, and you already have, the launch of HealthCare.gov was a disaster. It was so bad. It was bad. Look, I don’t even have an analogy, because the website is now the thing people use to describe other bad things.
They say stuff like, oh, I shouldn’t have eaten that sushi. I was up all night HealthCare.gov-ing. Boy, that latest Johnny Depp movie really HealthCare.gov’d at the box office. Oh, look at my new rug. Did the dogs HealthCare.gov on it? You can’t get HealthCare.gov out of shag.
But you are healthy, which is great. Every year the White House doctor checks the president’s colon for polyps and George Clooney’s head.
To Chris Christie:
All right, look, I know it’s been a long night, but I promise that tonight will be both amusing and over quickly, just like Chris Christie’s presidential bid.
I’ve got a lot of these tonight, so buckle up, Governor Christie. Excuse me — extender buckle up. (groans) Oh, I deserve that. I agree on that one. You’re right on.
Chris Christie is here. He’s actually here tonight. Wow, sir, you are a glutton — for punishment.
Governor, do you want bridge jokes or size jokes? Because I’ve got a bunch of both. I could go half and half. I know you like a combo platter. Now, I get that. I’m sorry for that joke, Governor Christie. I didn’t know I was going to tell it, but I take full responsibility for it. Whoever wrote it will be fired. But the buck stops here. So I will be a man and own up to it, just as soon as I get to the bottom of how it happened, because I was unaware it happened until just now.
I’m appointing a blue-ribbon commission of me to investigate the joke I just told. And if I find any wrongdoing on my part, I assure you I will be dealt with. I just looked into it. It turns out I’m not responsible for it. Justice has been served.
McHale introduced himself as a cast member of the NBC sitcom "Community." He also hosts "The Soup" on the E Network, or as he explains: "To Republicans in attendance, E is the channel that your deeply closeted gay son likes to watch. Democrats, it’s the same channel that your happy, openly gay son likes to watch. E is also home to the Kardashians, who, believe it or not, are Republicans. And I know that, because they’re always trying to screw black people."
To Cliven Bundy:
I hope you all enjoyed your dinner. The filet tonight was grass-fed beef, freshly dragged off the Cliven Bundy ranch. The steaks are very tasty once you pull off the tiny white hoods.
To news outlets:
This is the 100th year of the White House Correspondents’ Association. Yes, 100 years ago, CNN was only searching for the Wright brothers’ plane.
I am a big fan of that lesbian on MSNBC, Chris Hayes. He’s great. Yeah, yeah, I agree. MSNBC is a confusing place. I mean, Al Sharpton is their skinny guy.
And CNN is desperately searching for something they’ve been missing for months — their dignity. (Groans.) Totally. That was just that table. At this point, CNN is like the Radio Shack in a sad strip mall. You don’t know how it’s stayed in business this long. You don’t know anyone that shops there. And they just fired Piers Morgan. Thank you.
Fox News is the highest-rated network in cable news. Yeah. I can’t believe your table's pushed off that far. And it’s all thanks to their key demographic, the corpses of old people who tuned in to Fox News and haven’t yet been discovered.
Former “Inside Edition” host Bill O’Reilly is not here. He did host that. Bill’s got another book coming out soon, so he’s making his ghost writers work around the clock. Bill O’Reilly, Megyn Kelly and Sean Hannity are the Mount Rushmore of keeping old people angry.
The vice president isn’t here tonight, not for security reasons. He just thought this event was being held at the Dulles Airport Applebee’s. Yes, right now Joe is elbow-deep in jalapeno poppers and talking to a construction cone he thinks is John Boehner.
Hillary Clinton has a lot going for her as a candidate. She has experience. She’s a natural leader. And, as our first female president, we could pay her 30 percent less. That’s the savings this country could use. Who’s with me?
Hillary’s daughter Chelsea is pregnant, which means in nine months we will officially have a sequel to 'Bad Grandpa.' It also raises the question, when the baby is born, do you give Bill Clinton a cigar?
Jeb Bush says he’s thinking about running. Wow, another Bush might be in the White House. Is it already time for our every-10- years surprise party for Iraq?
As it stands right now, the Republican presidential nominee will either be Jeb Bush, Rand Paul, or a bag of flour with Ronald Reagan’s face drawn on it. A bag of flour. All right!
Hitting the stage earlier, President Obama gave his speech between two ferns, which were brought up to the podium as he began.
He began by ragging on himself:
I admit it — last year was rough. Sheesh. At one point things got so bad, the 47 percent called Mitt Romney to apologize.
Of course, we rolled out healthcare.gov. That could have gone better. In 2008 my slogan was, 'Yes We Can.' In 2013 my slogan was, 'Control-Alt-Delete.'
The most cringe-worthy moment for Obama was his tactless Malaysian flight joke:
I am happy to be here, even though I am a little jet-lagged from my trip to Malaysia. The lengths we have to go to get CNN coverage these days. I think they’re still searching for their table.
Obama hit more of the media:
MSNBC is here. They’re a little overwhelmed. They’ve never seen an audience this big before.
I got a lot of grief on cable news for promoting Obamacare to young people on Between Two Ferns. But that’s what young people like to watch. And to be fair, I am not the first person on television between two potted plants. [shows picture of Fox and Friends' Elisabeth Hasselbeck flanked by co-hosts Steve Doocy and Brian Kilmeade]
And speaking of conservative heroes, the Koch brothers bought a table here tonight. But as usual, they used a shadowy right-wing organization as a front. Hello, Fox News.
I’m just kidding. Let’s face it, Fox, you’ll miss me when I’m gone. It will be harder to convince the American people that Hillary was born in Kenya.
Here is Obama's address: