Washington is going to feel like a ghost town on the night of the traditional White House Correspondents’ Dinner. Normally, a big kickoff party serves as the lead-in to the event, in which the political elite get together to reinforce the polite fiction that they all have some semblance of a sense of humor about themselves. Earlier this year, though, The New Yorker announced that it’ll be canceling the event in light of President Donald Trump’s attitude toward the media, while Vanity Fair dropped out of a similarly traditional afterparty. The implication was that the whole event was going to basically suck, with little more than Trump doing bad stand-up to a semi-empty room of pissed-off journalists.
Now, things are getting even worse; according to The Hollywood Reporter, media syndicate Bloomberg has also dropped out of the festivities. Bloomberg—whose owner, Michael Bloomberg, has called Trump a “dangerous demagogue”—normally co-hosts the afterparty with Vanity Fair, so presumably that event is now well and truly dead. Meanwhile, CNN is still apparently sticking to its guns, weathering accusations of fake newsery and planning to hold its annual party; ditto The Atlantic and CBS News.
But the hottest ticket on April 29 might not technically have anything to do with the Correspondents’ Dinner at all. Full Frontal host Samantha Bee has counterprogrammed her own event—the Not the White House Correspondents’ Dinner—on the same night, to raise money for the Committee to Protect Journalists.