April 27th, 2012
12:04 PM ET
It’s the one night of the year when the president, his staff and those who follow him are allowed to loosen up and tickle their funny bones. Every year, the White House Correspondents’ Association Dinner gives politicians and the reporters who cover them a chance to laugh at themselves and the world around them. And for the comic tapped to deliver the keynote address at the dinner, it’s an opportunity to entertain Washington’s elite. But there are times where the comic makes the headlines for all the wrong reasons. You’ve gotta watch these moments when the keynote comics made more headlines than the jokes.
2011: Obama laughs off Osama joke
In 2011, “Saturday Night Live” star Seth Meyers joked about Osama bin Laden hiding on C-SPAN. What Meyers did not know was that U.S. intelligence had already found bin Laden and that he would be killed within hours. Watch President Obama and his staff put on their game faces about 30 seconds into the clip while Meyers poked fun.
2009: Sykes' controversial Limbaugh joke
Comedienne and actress Wanda Sykes pulled no punches and took no prisoners when she addressed the 2009 Correspondents’ Dinner. But Sykes heard a few “boo birds” when she connected radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh to Osama bin Laden and the 9/11 hijackers. Listen to Sykes’ remarks about 10 seconds into the clip and see if they were appropriate.
2006: Colbert rips Bush, Washington
In 2006, just a few months after his Comedy Central show premiered, Stephen Colbert brought his brand of satire to the Correspondents’ Dinner. While many laughed, his jabs at then-president George W. Bush and his administration angered a number of Bush’s aides and supporters, some of whom walked out during the performance. Watch and decide for yourself if Colbert was funny or infuriating.