Trump joked about everyone including his wife, ex Chief Strategist Steve Bannon, Jared Kushner’s security clearance issues, North Korean leader Kim Jung Un and himself.
Trump said that his staff was concerned he couldn’t do self deprecating humor, adding ‘I told them not to worry. Nobody does self deprecating humor better than I do.’
‘We were late tonight because Jared could not get through security,’ the president joked, referring to his son-in-law’s recent security clearance woes.
‘Ivanka, you’ve got to do something!’ Trump said, adding that Kushner is ‘a great guy who has suffered’.
He said that Vice President Mike Pence’s comedy talent was as a straight man, adding ‘He is straight!’
‘I really am very proud to call him The Apprentice,’ Trump said of Pence. ‘But lately he’s showing a particularly keen interest in the news these days. He is asking has he been impeached yet? I don’t like that.’
He continued, ‘Mike, you can’t be impeached when there’s no crime. I thought that was going to get a much better laugh. Melania said use it, it’s good.’
Trump said that he’d offered Jeff Sessions a ride to the dinner, but that the attorney general had ‘recused himself’.
Turning to the press, Trump said: ‘And it’s been a very tough year for CNN. They’ve lost a tremendous amount of credibility this year. And your best reporter, Steve Bannon. That guy leaked more than the Titanic. Boy did he leak.’
He said some people doubted him after he lost Bannon, his chief strategist, but joked that those same people now say ‘somehow you’re still doing great without Omarosa’.
‘Omarosa, you’re the worst!’ Trump declared.
‘So many people have been leaving the White House,’ Trump said of recent staff turnover. ‘It’s invigorating since you want turnover. I like chaos. It really is good. Who’s going to be the next to leave? Steve Miller, or Melania?’
He also referenced the #FreeMelania hashtag. ‘She’s actually having a great time,’ he said.
On North Korea, Trump quipped that he would not rule out direct talks with Kim Jong Un.
‘As far as the risk of dealing with a madman is concerned, that’s his problem, not mine,’ Trump said. ‘He must be a fine man. Do you think he’s a fine man?’
Trump said of a potential 2020 electoral challenge from ‘Sleepy Joe’ Biden: ‘I would kick his a** like no other…. Man, would he be easy.’
Trump also mocked Oprah and Democrat Senator Elizabeth Warren. He once again called Warren Pocahontas and quipped that the senator suggested he and Rex Tillerson should smoke a peace pipe with the Koreans.
Toward the end of the speech, Trump spoke about DACA. ‘I love the Dreamers…. we’re going to help the Dreamers,’ he said.
Trump said all were working together on DACA. ‘I hope that something’s going to happen,’ said Trump.
Trump concluded his remarks by thanking the press for all it does ‘to support and sustain our democracy. I mean that.’