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The White House Correspondents’ Dinner in laughter-renowned Washington DC shines a spotlight on the risks of journalism

Washington — White House Correspondents’ Club dinners are known to be fun despite their ferocious jabs in Washington, but this year the tone took on a more solemn tone, with President Joe Biden threatening authoritarian countries around the world. Acknowledged several American journalists under siege.

“We are here to send a message to our country and, frankly, to the world,” Biden said in his speech. Stated.

The media player video above has nothing to do with the current story.of ABC7 News Bay Area 24/7 Streaming Channel You can watch the news all day long.

The president and first lady Jill Biden personally met with the parents of Wall Street Journal reporter Evan Gershkovich, who has been imprisoned in Russia since March, upon arriving at the Washington Hilton on Saturday. He was indicted on espionage charges, despite strong denials from his employer and the U.S. government. Some guests wore buttons with “Free Evan” printed on them.

Also among the 2,600 people in attendance at the gala was Austin Theis’ mother, Debra Theis, who has been missing since disappearing at a Syrian checkpoint in 2012. trying to take him home.

“Journalism is not a crime. Evan and Austin, like all other Americans detained abroad, should be released immediately,” Biden said. “I promise, I’m working hard to get them home.”

The Bidens also saved the life of WNBA star and Olympic gold medalist Britney Griner. Griner spent about 10 months in Russian custody last year before being released in a prisoner exchange. Griner attended with his wife Sherrell as a guest on CBS News.

“This time last year, we were praying for you, Britney,” Biden said to the basketball star.

Various celebrities and media moguls gathered in Washington for the annual formal dinner, with parties held throughout the capital. Among those in attendance were actor Liev Schreiber, singer John Legend, and his wife, model and television personality Chrissy Teigen.

Actor and former California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger called reporters “friends of the people” and held a prerecorded video dinner on the importance of a free and independent press. Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris took a seat on stage with comedian Roy Wood Jr., a correspondent for “The Daily Show,” an up-and-coming entertainer.

While Biden spent most of his speech focusing on press freedom issues, he also took time to criticize some of his most vocal political critics. It’s familiar and comfortable for Biden, who has attended several of the dinners as president. Biden was the first president in six years to accept an invitation after Donald Trump avoided the event while in office.

But this year, he has emerged not only as Commander-in-Chief, but also as a presidential candidate.

He began his punchline with House Speaker Kevin McCarthy and aimed directly at recent Republican-passed legislation that would raise the debt ceiling in exchange for a series of budget cuts, including some of Biden’s key legislative accomplishments. determined.

Biden referred to the terrible battle McCarthy endured until he became chairman in January, saying, “The last time Republicans voted, it unfortunately took 15 tries.

And he didn’t stop there, looking at the age of Fox Chairman Rupert Murdoch. “And do you call me old?” he said to the crowd.

Biden even made a few self-deprecating jokes around criticism of his age when he launched his second bid for re-election. Not just because my good friend Jimmy Madison wrote it.”

Wood, who took the stage after Biden, also focused on the president’s age.

“We should be inspired by what happened in France. When the retirement age was raised from two to 64, they rioted,” Wood said. “On the other hand, in America, there’s an 80-year-old man who’s asking for four more years.”

https://abc7ny.com/white-house-correspondents-association-dinner-journalism-2023-joe-biden/13196943/ The White House Correspondents’ Dinner in laughter-renowned Washington DC shines a spotlight on the risks of journalism

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