By Mahita Gajanan
April 11, 2017

Hasan Minhaj, a Daily Show correspondent and comedian, will be the entertainer at the annual White House Correspondents’ Dinner, the association’s president announced on Tuesday.

“I am thrilled that Hasan will serve as our featured entertainer at this year’s White House Correspondents’ Dinner,” WHCA president and Reuters White House correspondent Jeff Mason said in a statement. “Hasan’s smarts, big heart and passion for press freedom make him the perfect fit for our event, which will be focused on the First Amendment and the importance of a robust and independent media.”

President Trump will skip the annual dinner this year, which typically brings a star entertainer together with the press corps, celebrities and White House staff. Trump’s adversarial relationship with the press prompted several news organizations to pull out of this year’s event and many celebrities have called for a boycott. Like the president, the White House staff will not attend the dinner.

“It is a tremendous honor to be a part of such a historic event even though the president has chosen not to attend this year. SAD!” Minhaj said in a statement. “Now more than ever, it is vital that we honor the First Amendment and the freedom of the press.”

The dinner will be held on April 29 at the Hilton in Washington, D.C.

Samantha Bee, the host of TBS’s Full Frontal and a former correspondent for the Daily Show, announced in January that she would host an alternative event on the same day as the dinner that she’s calling “Not the White House Correspondents’ Dinner.”She promised to donate proceeds from the event to the Committee to Protect Journalists.

 

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