Watch Colin Jost roast Biden, Trump and others at White House Correspondents’ Dinner

CNN
27 Apr 202423:27

Summary

TLDRIn a humorous and reflective speech at the White House Correspondents' Dinner, comedian Colin Jost delivers the Republican response with a blend of political satire and personal anecdotes. He touches on the challenges of journalism in the digital age, the peculiarities of the current political climate, and the importance of decency in public life. Jost also shares a personal story about his grandfather, a Staten Island firefighter who voted for President Biden, highlighting the value of character in leadership. His speech is a reminder of the role of journalists in protecting freedom of speech and the significance of maintaining a sense of humor in divisive times.

Takeaways

  • 🎀 The speaker, Colin Jost, humorously addresses the audience at the White House Correspondents Dinner, highlighting the contrast between the current and past administrations.
  • πŸ“° A lighthearted jab is made at the media, with the comment that the Washington Post would 'kill for' the circulation numbers of the Staten Island Advance where Jost started his career.
  • 🀡 Jost pokes fun at his own profession, mentioning that he pretends to do news on TV, and playfully criticizes the media's reliance on social media for news.
  • πŸ‘΄ A tribute is paid to Jost's late grandfather, a firefighter, who voted for President Biden in the last election, emphasizing the theme of decency in leadership.
  • πŸ“‰ The script touches on the economy, suggesting that despite negative perceptions, the numbers indicate a strong economy, albeit with some sarcasm.
  • πŸ€” Jost expresses the paradox of the political climate, where despite controversies, the race for the presidency is depicted as being tied.
  • πŸ‘Ά The joke about President Biden being compared to Obama in terms of health care strides, but also humorously to O.J. Simpson, adds a satirical take on political achievements.
  • 🚫 The speaker points out the reliance on social media for news consumption, noting that this might be a flawed approach given its source.
  • 🎨 A humorous observation is made about the lack of cameras in the courtroom forcing sketch artists to capture the image of Trump, leading to unflattering depictions.
  • πŸ‘©β€πŸ‘¦ Jost shares a personal story about his grandfather's multifaceted work life and his abstention from alcohol due to family history, to draw parallels with President Biden's qualities.
  • πŸ™ The closing remarks thank the President for his decency and the journalists for their role in preserving freedom of speech and press.

Q & A

  • What is the event being hosted by Colin Jost?

    -Colin Jost is hosting the White House Correspondents' Dinner.

  • Why does Colin Jost mention needing to return to New York?

    -He is a juror in a big trial and Trump's lawyer believes he will be on their side.

  • Why does Colin Jost joke about not being able to show President Biden's high school pictures?

    -The technology to have such pictures wasn't available when President Biden was in high school.

  • What is the significance of Colin Jost being referred to as 'the second gentleman'?

    -It's a reference to his wife, Scarlett Johansson, and the fact that he is hosting the event rather than being the main focus.

  • Why does Colin Jost mention Fox News and their coverage of Donald Trump?

    -He is poking fun at the network's perceived bias, suggesting they portrayed Trump's falling asleep in court as a political statement.

  • What is the nickname given to the White House Correspondents' Dinner in the script?

    -The event is referred to as 'Nerd Prom' in the script.

  • What is the occupation of Colin Jost's grandfather?

    -Colin Jost's grandfather was a firefighter on Staten Island for 40 years.

  • Why did Colin Jost's grandfather vote for President Biden?

    -He voted for President Biden because he saw him as a decent man.

  • What is the main theme of Colin Jost's closing remarks?

    -The main theme of his closing remarks is the importance of decency and the role of journalists in protecting freedom.

  • Why does Colin Jost mention the New York Post and its style of reporting?

    -He is making a humorous comparison between the New York Post's sensationalist style and the more serious reporting of the New York Times.

  • What is the implication of Colin Jost's joke about the Washington Post and their daily circulation?

    -He is suggesting that despite the Washington Post's prestige, they might envy the Staten Island Advance's circulation numbers.

Outlines

00:00

πŸ˜€ Introduction and Humorous Remarks

Colin Jost begins with a self-deprecating joke about his high school appearance and then humorously addresses the differences in treatment between himself and President Biden. He introduces himself as the host for the evening, mentioning his role as a juror and a joke about being chosen by Trump's lawyer. The segment includes light-hearted jabs at the current political climate and figures, including a playful tease about President Biden's alertness and a nod to the event's significance.

05:05

πŸ“° Journalism and Media Industry Commentary

Jost highlights his background in journalism and congratulates award winners, emphasizing the importance of journalism students and the Correspondents' Association scholarships. He pokes fun at the presence of various news organizations, including The Washington Post, Fox News, and the New York Times, and makes a satirical comment on the state of print media. The paragraph also contains jokes about political figures and the nature of political communication in the digital age.

10:07

πŸ˜‰ Political Satire and Election Reflection

This paragraph contains political satire, focusing on the absurdities of the election and the contrasting images of the candidates. Jost humorously discusses the accusations against President Biden, the age of the candidates, and the peculiarities of political affiliations. He also touches on the state of the economy, comparing it to the steps of Air Force One and suggesting an unconventional method for eliminating the national debt.

15:10

πŸ‘΄ Personal Anecdote and Tribute

Jost shares a personal story about his grandfather, a Staten Island firefighter, and how he represents the values of decency and hard work. He uses this story to connect with President Biden, drawing parallels between his grandfather's qualities and those of the President. The paragraph serves as a tribute to his grandfather and a reflection on the importance of decency in public life.

20:13

πŸ™ Closing Remarks and Expressions of Gratitude

In the final paragraph, Jost wraps up his address with gratitude towards his family, friends, and the audience for their support. He acknowledges the role of journalists in protecting freedom and emphasizes the rarity and value of such liberties. He thanks President Biden for embodying decency and concludes the evening on a note of appreciation and respect for the democratic process and the people involved in it.

Mindmap

Keywords

πŸ’‘White House Correspondents Dinner

The White House Correspondents Dinner is an annual event where journalists and members of the U.S. government gather to celebrate and honor the First Amendment and freedom of the press. It is often marked by humor and satire, as seen in the script where the speaker, Colin Jost, delivers jokes and commentary on political figures.

πŸ’‘President Biden

President Biden refers to Joe Biden, the 46th President of the United States. In the script, he is mentioned in various contexts, including jokes about his age and political actions, highlighting his central role in current U.S. politics.

πŸ’‘Republican Response

The term 'Republican Response' suggests a counterpoint or alternative perspective to the views typically expressed by the Democrats. In the script, Colin Jost mentions that he will be delivering the Republican response, indicating a satirical take on political discourse.

πŸ’‘Print Journalists

Print journalists are professionals who work for newspapers, magazines, or other print media outlets. They are mentioned in the script as individuals who are facing challenges in the digital age but are still crucial for investigative reporting and holding power to account.

πŸ’‘Social Media

Social media refers to online platforms that allow users to create and share content or participate in social networking. The script notes that 90% of people now get their news from social media, indicating the platform's significant role in shaping public opinion and the challenges it poses to traditional journalism.

πŸ’‘Decency

Decency, in the context of the script, refers to moral acceptability and propriety. Colin Jost uses the term to describe his grandfather's reasons for voting for President Biden and to commend the president for embodying this quality, which is central to the theme of the speech.

πŸ’‘Freedom of the Press

Freedom of the press is a fundamental principle in democratic societies that allows journalists to report the news without censorship or restraint. It is alluded to in the script as a value that the journalists in the room help protect and which is essential for the functioning of a free society.

πŸ’‘TikTok

TikTok is a social media platform known for its short-form videos. In the script, it is mentioned in the context of people getting their news from the platform and the potential for it to be banned in the U.S., which would impact the way information is disseminated.

πŸ’‘Economy

The economy is the system of production, distribution, and consumption of goods and services. The script discusses the U.S. economy, noting that despite negative perceptions, the numbers indicate strength, and it is compared to the steps of Air Force One, suggesting a perception of instability despite actual progress.

πŸ’‘Abortion Rights

Abortion rights refer to the issue of whether a woman has the right to choose to terminate a pregnancy. In the script, it is mentioned in a political context, highlighting the complexities and contradictions in the stances of different political figures on this contentious issue.

πŸ’‘Catholic

Catholic refers to a member of the Roman Catholic Church. The script discusses President Biden being a Catholic and contrasts his personal faith with his political actions, particularly regarding abortion rights, which are a significant issue within Catholic doctrine.

Highlights

Colin Jost delivers the Republican response at the White House Correspondents' Dinner.

Jost jokes about the unfairness of showing his high school footage compared to President Biden's due to technological differences.

He humorously mentions being a juror on a big trial and Trump's lawyer's confidence in him.

Jost acknowledges the refreshing change of seeing a president at an event that doesn't start with everyone standing for a bailiff.

He pokes fun at the contrast between President Biden being awake past 10 p.m. and Donald Trump falling asleep in court.

Jost humorously confuses Matt Gaetz with his own reflection in a spoon.

He mentions losing all his black support in solidarity with President Biden, highlighting a setup for a joke.

Jost congratulates all the award winners at the event and emphasizes the importance of journalism.

The Correspondents' Association scholarships are highlighted for promising young journalism students.

Jost jokes about the audience watching C-SPAN on a Saturday night and the grim outcome.

He acknowledges the presence of various news organizations, including The Washington Post and Fox News, with a touch of humor.

Jost humorously compares The New York Times to The New York Post in terms of their headline presentation.

Lara Trump's release of a song cover is joked about, with a twist involving the late Tom Petty.

Jost addresses the political strategies of emailing and the importance of managing expectations in the current political climate.

He humorously discusses the comparison between President Biden and his grandfather, a firefighter, and their shared qualities.

Jost emphasizes the importance of decency in politics and thanks President Biden for embodying it.

The role of journalists in protecting freedom and the need to never take it for granted is highlighted.

Jost concludes by thanking his family, friends, and the audience for their support and participation in the event.

Transcripts

00:00

Thank you, everyone.

00:01

Hello.

00:03

That was hard hitting journalism

00:05

you saw in the owl.

00:07

I didn't know

00:08

you were going to show

00:09

me from high school.

00:11

That's surprising.

00:12

Yeah, it's not really fair.

00:14

You can't do it for President Biden

00:16

because the technology wasn't invented

00:18

when he was in high school.

00:20

So really fair.

00:25

Okay.

00:27

Good evening, everyone.

00:28

I'm Colin Jost,

00:29

and I'll be delivering

00:30

the Republican response.

00:36

I'll be honest with you,

00:37

I don't have a lot of time.

00:38

I need to get back to New York

00:39

because I'm juror number

00:41

five on a big trial.

00:45

Trump's lawyer took one look at me

00:47

and he's like,

00:47

He's got to be on our side.

00:59

Thank you,

00:59

Kelly, for that very kind introduction.

01:02

Mr. President.

01:03

Dr.

01:03

Biden, Vice President Harris.

01:06

Doug.

01:16

Doug, as you can tell from

01:17

all the comments about my wife,

01:19

I'm also used to being

01:20

the second gentleman,

01:31

and I am honored

01:32

to be here

01:33

hosting what is, according

01:34

to swing state polls,

01:36

the final White House

01:37

Correspondents Dinner.

01:46

I hope that tonight will be a night

01:48

to remember

01:50

for most of us.

02:01

I was excited to be up here on stage

02:03

with President Biden tonight,

02:04

mostly to see if I could figure out

02:06

where Obama was pulling the strings from.

02:15

I have to

02:16

I have to admit, it's not easy

02:17

following President Biden.

02:19

I mean, it's not always easy

02:20

following what he's saying.

02:21

Like.

02:32

But before I begin tonight,

02:34

can we just acknowledge

02:35

how refreshing it is

02:36

to see a president of the United States

02:38

at an event

02:39

that doesn't begin with a

02:40

bailiff saying, all rise?

02:51

And I would like to point

02:52

out it's after 10 p.m..

02:54

Sleepy Joe is still awake.

02:59

While Donald Trump

03:00

has spent the past week

03:01

falling asleep in court.

03:02

Every morning,

03:05

though, Fox News said

03:06

he was just being anti-EU.

03:07

Woke.

03:18

We are all here tonight

03:19

at Nerd Prom.

03:23

Well, Matt Gaetz

03:24

is at regular prom, but

03:33

I actually thought

03:34

I saw Matt Gaetz here tonight.

03:36

But it was actually just

03:36

my own reflection in a spoon.

03:48

Like many of you here tonight,

03:49

I pretend to do news on TV.

03:59

My Weekend

04:00

Update co-anchor, Michael Che,

04:02

was going to join me here tonight,

04:04

but in solidarity with President Biden,

04:06

I decided to lose all my black support.

04:17

Che told me to say that, and I'm

04:19

just realizing I was set up.

04:30

I've done

04:30

Weekend Update for a while now,

04:32

but most people don't know

04:33

that I started out doing the actual news.

04:36

My first job out of college

04:38

was as a reporter

04:39

for the Staten Island Advance newspaper.

04:45

They do not have a table here tonight,

04:50

but they asked me to pass along

04:52

this message to the other

04:53

print journalists in the room.

04:55

You think you're better than me?

05:05

By the way,

05:05

I want to point out, when I worked

05:06

at the Staten Island advance,

05:07

we had a daily circulation of 100,000.

05:11

The Washington Post would kill for that.

05:19

So as a former aspiring journalist,

05:21

I want to genuinely congratulate

05:24

all the award winners here tonight.

05:26

Congratulations.

05:32

The Correspondents

05:33

Association provides

05:34

scholarships to promising

05:36

young journalism students

05:37

who may one day

05:38

be sent off

05:39

to cover dangerous geopolitical hotspots

05:41

like Columbia University.

05:51

Tonight, this event

05:52

is being televised live on C-SPAN.

05:56

You do.

05:59

And if you're at home

06:00

watching C-SPAN on a Saturday night,

06:04

I hope they find your body soon

06:11

before your cats

06:12

get to it.

06:18

There are so many incredible news

06:21

organizations here tonight.

06:23

Also, a few credible ones.

06:29

The Washington Post is here.

06:31

Washington Post.

06:34

They were the ones taking your coats

06:36

at the door.

06:37

Please be sure to tip.

06:45

Fox News is here tonight.

06:49

It's the end of an era.

06:51

Rupert Murdoch stepped down at Fox News,

06:54

which is strange.

06:55

I didn't think there was

06:56

a step down from Fox News.

07:05

Trump media is here.

07:07

Trump media Not at a table just screaming

07:10

loudly in the corner to no one.

07:14

Wardle is here tonight.

07:17

Sorry. Sorry.

07:18

I meant the New York Times.

07:23

I forgot they do stuff

07:24

in addition to puzzles.

07:29

I have to say, it's not a great sign

07:31

when the only thing

07:31

keeping a print media

07:33

company alive are games

07:34

people play on their phones.

07:39

Too chilling for you guys

07:42

in this room just froze faster than Mitch

07:44

McConnell.

07:50

And I have to say apologies to the Times,

07:52

but as a Staten Islander,

07:53

I still get all my news

07:55

from the New York Post.

07:58

Thank you.

07:59

The only paper

08:00

where the front page

08:01

always has the same 200 point font,

08:05

whether the headline is World

08:06

War three to start tomorrow

08:08

or Central Park

08:09

Owl Dead in Building Collision.

08:18

The New York Post is like

08:19

having the New York Times

08:21

summarized for you by a crackhead.

08:28

The Times will say a border

08:30

deal continues to evade Congress

08:33

and the Post is like

08:34

these Mexicans are taking my stuff.

08:47

There are so many incredible

08:48

individuals here tonight.

08:49

Lara Trump is here tonight.

08:52

Okay, I got one.

08:53

Woo!

08:55

She recently released a cover of the song

08:58

I Won't Back Down.

08:59

Upon hearing it, Tom Petty died again.

09:07

I can't believe I'm saying this

09:08

to a member of the Trump family.

09:10

But maybe stick to politics.

09:19

Senator Bernie

09:20

Sanders is here

09:24

because he's not the type

09:25

to pass up a free hot meal.

09:32

And in general,

09:33

there are so many hardworking,

09:35

influential senators

09:36

and congresspeople here tonight

09:38

and I just want to say,

09:39

on behalf of everyone I know, stop

09:42

emailing us.

09:48

Stop it.

09:50

We get it.

09:51

Democracy is on the line.

09:54

And your plan to save

09:55

it is to flood our inboxes

09:57

like your Crate and Barrel.

10:04

It's also wonderful

10:05

to be back in Washington.

10:06

I love being in Washington.

10:08

The last time I was in D.C.,

10:09

I left my cocaine at the White House.

10:14

Luckily, the president was able to put it

10:16

to good use for his State of the Union.

10:27

I'm kidding.

10:27

Of course, the president doesn't

10:29

call it cocaine.

10:29

He calls it high speed rail.

10:34

Oh, that's.

10:38

By the way,

10:39

can you blame the guy

10:40

for turning to cocaine?

10:41

He must be exhausted,

10:42

orchestrating four separate trials

10:45

against his rival,

10:46

rigging the Super Bowl

10:48

and gearing up

10:49

to steal a second election.

10:51

Wow.

10:58

Biden laughed.

11:01

I love, by the way,

11:02

the Trump's

11:02

two attacks on President Biden

11:04

are that he's a senile old man

11:06

and a criminal mastermind.

11:12

I'm like,

11:12

I think you got to pick one.

11:16

Personally, I don't know

11:17

any criminal masterminds

11:18

who bike to get ice cream.

11:27

Also, it's not like Trump

11:28

himself is young and sharp.

11:32

I'm not saying both

11:33

candidates are old, but,

11:34

you know,

11:34

Jimmy Carter is out there thinking

11:36

I could maybe win this thing.

11:47

He's only 99.

11:54

There is an election.

11:55

There is an election six

11:57

extremely long months from now.

12:00

So let me see if I can summarize

12:02

where this race stands at this moment.

12:05

The Republican candidate

12:06

for president

12:07

owes half a billion in fines

12:09

for bank fraud

12:11

and is currently spending his days

12:13

farting himself awake

12:15

during a porn star hush money trial.

12:18

And the race is tied.

12:28

The race is tied.

12:32

Nothing makes sense anymore.

12:35

The candidate

12:36

who is a famous

12:37

New York City Playboy

12:39

took abortion rights away

12:41

and the guy who's trying to give you

12:42

your abortion rights back

12:44

is an 80 year old Catholic.

12:45

How does that make sense?

12:58

By the way,

12:58

President Biden, isn't it crazy

12:59

that he's only our second

13:01

Catholic president?

13:02

And what's even crazier is that in

13:03

just a few short months,

13:05

we'll have our third in RFK Jr.

13:13

I'm kidding.

13:14

Like his vaccine card

13:15

says he doesn't have a shot.

13:23

Everything feels strange

13:25

now by a lot of measures.

13:27

President biden

13:28

is having a very successful first term,

13:30

but people don't seem to realize it.

13:32

Like with the economy,

13:34

the vibes are bad,

13:35

but the numbers say it's strong.

13:38

The economy is kind of

13:39

like you on the steps of Air Force One.

13:46

It feels like it's stumbling,

13:48

but there is somehow upward progress.

13:56

I do think that you can do more.

13:58

On the economy, sir.

13:59

I really do.

14:00

For example,

14:01

have you considered

14:02

eliminating the national debt

14:03

by shorting Trump's stock?

14:15

People keep

14:16

asking if our

14:17

lives are better than they

14:18

were four years ago.

14:20

Of course they are.

14:22

Four years ago,

14:23

we didn't have online sports gambling.

14:27

What more do you need

14:30

at?

14:30

That's probably what's

14:31

keeping the economy afloat.

14:33

Online gambling and Taylor Swift.

14:35

Without those,

14:35

we'd be in a recession right now.

14:41

The problem

14:42

is, people are always going

14:43

to compare your first term to Obama's.

14:46

But I think there are actually

14:47

a lot of positives, similarities.

14:50

You both made big strides in health care.

14:53

Obama got us out of a recession.

14:55

You got us out of a pandemic.

14:57

Obama got bin Laden.

14:59

You got O.J.

15:10

And by the way, now that O.J. is dead.

15:12

Who is the new frontrunner

15:13

for Trump's VP?

15:16

Is it Diddy?

15:20

Anyway,

15:21

I bet if Trump did

15:22

select Diddy as his running mate,

15:24

I bet this race would still be tied.

15:32

I think even some Democrats say

15:34

that they are underwhelmed,

15:35

but I think they're

15:36

just not living in reality.

15:38

Manage your expectations, people.

15:41

It's like tonight. Sure.

15:43

We all wish

15:44

we were at the Waldorf right now,

15:46

but we're at the Washington Hilton

15:52

and we have to make

15:53

the best of it.

15:56

Just be happy you're not at the airport.

15:58

Hilton

16:06

journalists.

16:07

These are challenging times

16:08

and we need the people in this room

16:10

to help guide us through it.

16:12

Your jobs are not easy,

16:13

and it doesn't help that we're living

16:15

at the end of traditional media.

16:17

The gatekeepers are gone.

16:18

Did you know

16:19

that 90% of people now

16:21

get their news

16:22

exclusively from social media?

16:24

And that must be true

16:25

because I saw it in a

16:26

random guy's TikTok.

16:30

He was

16:30

recording the video

16:31

while driving a Toyota Corolla,

16:33

but he seemed to know his stuff.

16:39

Isn't it

16:39

crazy, by the way, that Tik Tok

16:40

could be outlawed in the U.S.

16:42

by the end of this year?

16:43

That's a real shame,

16:44

because we're going to need

16:45

Tik Tok to document

16:47

who is storming the Capitol next

16:49

January 6th.

16:59

Things are not bad for everyone, though.

17:01

This may be the worst time in history

17:03

to be a print journalist.

17:04

It is the best time in history

17:06

to be a courtroom sketch artist.

17:10

My God, the most famous

17:12

man on earth

17:14

is on trial

17:15

and there is no cameras allowed.

17:17

Just the artists, their pastels,

17:21

and their desire

17:22

to make Trump look as bad as possible.

17:26

Every sketch of Trump

17:27

looks like the Grinch

17:28

had sex with The Lorax.

17:40

In closing.

17:46

I would really

17:46

like to take a moment

17:47

to recognize

17:48

all the print journalists in this room.

17:50

Your words speak truth to power.

17:54

Your words bring light to the darkness

17:57

and most importantly, your words.

17:59

Train the

18:00

AI programs that will soon replace you.

18:09

And finally,

18:10

I wanted to thank my family,

18:12

and I wanted to thank my friends

18:13

for being here tonight to support me.

18:16

I want to thank my wife

18:17

for enduring lots of jokes

18:21

and for agreeing to individually meet

18:24

everyone in this room

18:25

right after the ceremony.

18:29

And is.

18:33

That's really special, honey.

18:34

Thank you.

18:36

Don't be shy.

18:37

Come right up.

18:41

She hates privacy.

18:50

And with my with my family in mind,

18:53

I wanted to share one last thing with you