President Donald Trump is not fighting his war against the media alone. Joining Trump are members of the White House staff who have planned to skip this year’s White House Correspondents’ Association dinner after he announced he would not attend.
The planned boycott of the annual dinner, a tradition dating back nearly a century, was delivered via an email from the association’s president to members who represent the news organizations covering the White House. The president is commonly the guest of honor along with top aides and Cabinet secretaries who are often among the VIP guests invited to the event.
Jeff Mason, a White House correspondent for Reuters, made a statement via the following email:
“The WHCA board regrets this decision very much. We have worked hard to build a constructive relationship with the Trump White House and believe strongly that this goal is possible even with the natural tension between the press and administrations that is a hallmark of a healthy republic.”
In Addition to Trump’s decision to skip the event, many news organizations have canceled plans that commonly revolve around the dinner. Included on the list of cancellations is People magazine, which decided to skip the dinner, but instead donate money to the WHCA, an organization that raises money at the event for scholarships.
Mason’s email went on to say:
“Only the White House can speak to the signal it wants to send with this decision. But our signal is clear: We will celebrate the First Amendment on April 29 and look forward to acknowledging the important work of our terrific members and awarding scholarships to students who represent the next generation of our profession.”
Source: The Washington Post