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tv   Washington This Week  CSPAN  April 28, 2013 7:00pm-8:01pm EDT

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>> who knew that ed henry has jokes? kevin spacey, i love you. but the reason why we are here today -- is conan o'brien funny? yes. is the first lady abd? -- a beauty? yes. we are colleagues, but also competitors in this room. there are a lot of people waiting in the wings that want to take our jobs. [laughter] before the started, i went backstage to talk to them. i would like to introduce you to
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the real vips in this room by starting at howard university student. she admires you, bill o'reilly. come on out. [applause] her highlight was getting a picture with the first lady and the president of the united states. another says she admires you, anna wintour. she says, she is so beautiful. come on out. [applause] ashley told me she loves anyone because she loves documentaries.
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[applause] another loves anything local news. both of us who know local news, that is a good choice. -- those of us who know local news, that is a good choice. [applause] and omar. university -- columbia missouri. [applause] ms. chin is a big fan of maria another loves all things "60 minutes." psy is sitting next to charlie rose. we asked him what he wanted and he says he wants a row file on
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"60 minutes." -- profile on "60 minutes." gina cook loves conan o'brien. kipp says his favorite anchor person is just daniels from "newsroom." [laughter] ok, kipp. come on out. alexandra had the best answer. i asked everybody who the admired and what shows they watched. she thought for a couple minutes
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and said, no one really. i want to chart my own course. i love that own course. come on out. [applause] a special shout out to paul judd. you'll know know what it means. from northwestern, come on out. from the university of california, berkeley, angela. she was very excited backstage. and last but not the least, ingram. he says he loves cynee simpson of channel 7. come on out. a final round of applause for
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all the scholarship winners. [applause] while you're standing, come on up. [applause] she said, don't forget me. >> congratulations. we are so proud of you. >> thank you. [applause]
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>> i have some juice with candy crowley. now is the time i have been waiting for. i will give a toast. for nearly 100 years, our toast has only been one toast, which is to the president. given all the work for the scholarship fund, i would like everyone to stand and raise a toast to the president of the united states and mrs. obama. >> cheers.
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without further ado, i would like introduce the president of the united states. [cheers and applause]♪ >> thank you. thank you. how do you like my new entrance music? [cheers and applause] rush limbaugh warned you about this. second term, maybe. [laughter] -- second term, baby. [laughter] we are changing things around here a little bit.
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actually my advisors were a little worried about the new entrance music. they are little bit more traditional. they suggested i should start with some notes at my own expense just to take myself down a peg. i was like, after four and a half years, how many pegs are there left? [laughter] i want to thank the white house correspondents. ed, you are doing an astounding job. [applause] we are grateful to the work you have done. for all of the dignitaries who are here and everyone, thank you for the outstanding service and all the men and women who are in uniform every single day.
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and of course, our extraordinary first lady, michelle obama. [applause] everybody loves michelle. she is on the cover of vogue. high poll numbers. don't worry. i got my own magazine cover. [laughter] i get it. i look in the mirror and i have to admit i'm not the strapping young person i used to be. [laughter] [applause] time passes. you get a little gray.
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and yet, even after all this time, i still make rookie mistakes. i'm in california at a fundraiser and having a nice time. i happen to mention that a woman is the best looking attorney in the country. as you can imagine, i got trouble when i got back home. [laughter] who knew eric holder was so sensitive? [laughter] then there is the easter egg roll. looks like a nice, fun event with the kids. i go to the basketball courts. i took money to shots -- 22 shots. made 2. 2 hits. 20 minutes. the executives at nbc asked, what is your secret? [laughter]
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so, yes, maybe i have lost a step, but some things are beyond my control. this whole controversy about daisy going to cuba -- jay-z going to cuba. [laughter] of course, everyone has got plenty of vice. -- advice. one said i could solve all of my problems if i was just like michael douglas in the american president. michael, what is your secret?
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could it be that you were an actor in an aaron sorkin liberal fantasy? [laughte might that have something to do it? i do not know. check in with me. maybe it is something else. anyway, i recognize that this job can take a toll on you. i understand second term you need a burst of new energy. try some new things. we are willing to try anything. we borrowed one of michele's tips. [laughter] i thought this looked pretty good, but no bounds -- bounce.
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anyway, i want to give a shout out to conan o'brien. [applause] i was talking to ed. i understand when they are considering own and o'brien for the gig, there was the age-old dilemma to offer it to him now or wait five years until they give it to jimmy fallon. [crowd oohs] that was a little harsh. i love conan. of course, cnn has taken some knocks lately. i admire their commitment.
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[laughter] my former advisers that have switched over to the dark side, david axle right -- axelrode. the history channel is not here. i guess they are embarrassed about the whole obama is the double thing. -- devil thing. that never kept fox news from showing up. they thought the comparison was not fair to satan. [laughter]
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the media landscape is changing rapidly. you cannot keep up with the. -- with it. i remember when buzz feed was something i did around 2 a.m. it is true. [laughter] recently i found a new favorite source for political news. these guys are great. everyone should check it out. it is called whitehouse.gov. i cannot get enough of it. the fact is, i really do respect the press. i recognize that the press and i
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have different jobs to do. my job is to be president. your job is to keep me humble. frankly i think i'm doing my job better. [laughter] part of the problem is that everyone is so cynical. we are constantly feeding cynicism and conspiracies. remember a few months ago prime minister shouldn't put out a photograph of me going -- shooting at camp david? a number of people insisted this has been photoshop. tonight have something to confess -- you are right. can we show them the actual photo? [laughter] we were trying to tone it down a
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little bit. that was an awesome day. [laughter] there are other new players in the media landscape as well like super pacs. did you know that sheldon spent $100 million of his own money last year on negative ads? he must really dislike me. to spend that kind of money. that is oprah money. you could buy an island and call it nobama for that kind of money. sheldon would have been better off offering me when hundred million dollars to drop out of the race. [laughter] [applause]
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i probably would not have taken it, but i thought about it. [laughter] michelle would have taken it. [laughter] you think i'm joking. [laughter] i know republicans are still sorting out what happened in 2012. what they all agree upon is reaching out. call me self centered, but i could think of when minority they could start with. [laughter] hello. [applause] think of me as a trial run. see how it goes. [laughter]
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if they won't come to me, i will come to them for stop -- come to them. i recently had a dinner with a number of republican senators. i will admit it was not easy. i proposed a toast. of course, some folks still don't think i spend enough time with congress. why don't you get a treat -- drink with mitch mcconnell, they asked? really? why don't you get a drink with mitch mcconnell? [laughter] i'm sorry. i get frustrated sometimes. [laughter] i'm not giving up.
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in fact, i'm taking my charm offensive on the road. second barbecue with ted cruz. kentucky bluegrass concert with rand paul. and a book burning with michele bachmann. [mix of laughs and oohs] my charm offensive has let me learn some interesting things going on in congress. it turns out absolutely nothing. but the point of my charm offensive is simple. we need to make progress on some important issues. republicans fell in love with the sequester and now they cannot stop talking about how much they hate it, like we are trapped in a taylor swift album. [laughter]
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one senator who had reached across the aisle recently is marco rubio. i don't know about 2016. he has not finished a single term in the senate and he think he is ready to be president. kids these days. on thursday, i went to the opening of the bush presidential library in dallas. wonderful event. that got me inspired to get started on my own legacy. it will begin by building another edifice right next to the bush library. can we show that? [laughter]
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i'm also hard at work on plans for the obama library. some have suggested we put it in my birthplace, but i would rather keep it in the united states. [laughter] [applause] did anyone not see that joke coming? [laughter] only gallup? dick morris? [laughter] speaking of presidents and their legacies, i want to acknowledge a wonderful run, and steven spielberg and daniel day-lewis who are here tonight. we had a screening of their most recent film "lincoln."
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extraordinary film. i'm nervous about stephen's next project. i saw a behind-the-scenes look on hbo. let's check it out. roll the tape. >> i was thrilled that lincoln was a success. i was thinking about what to do next. in the middle of the night i woke up and it hit me. obama. why wait? picking the right actor to play obama, that was a challenge. we never got his transcripts. they say he is kind of aloof. i need someone to become barack obama. it turns out the answer was right in front of me all along. daniel day-lewis. [laughter] he nailed it.
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>> it took a while. hello, ohio. i love you back. let me be clear about that. [laughter] >> once we had daniel to play >> i never could've played joe biden. [laughter] >> trying to understand his motivation. what makes him tick? >> i would be mad all the time, but i am not. [laughter]
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>> remarkable transformation. do i really sound like that? groucho marx once said, senator cruz, that is groucho marx, not karl. the other guy. he once told an audience, before i speak, i something important to say. along those same lines, i want to close on a more serious note. there has been no shortage of news to cover over the past few weeks. the suspense and very hard days
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for many of our citizens. even as we gather here tonight, our thoughts are not far from the people of boston and the people of west, texas and the families in the midwest coping with some terrible floods. we have had some difficult days. but even when the days seemed darkest, we have seen humanity shine at its brightest. we have seen first responders and national guardsmen who dashed into danger. law-enforcement officers who lived their oath, to serve and protect. and everyday americans opening their homes and their hearts to perfect strangers. we also saw journalist that their best. especially those that took their time to wait upstream through the torrent of digital rumors to just family didn't verify leads and facts.
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if anyone wonders whether newspapers are a thing of the past, all you need to do is pick up or log on to papers like "the boston globe." [applause] when their communities and the wider world needed them most, they were there. making sense of the events that might, at first blush, seem beyond our comprehension. that is what great journalism is. that is what great journalist do. that is why pete williams' new nickname around the nbc newsroom is big papi. i got a chance to meet many of the volunteers and police
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officers who raced to help when hardship hit. i was reminded, as i always am when i meet our men and women in uniform, whether they are abroad or here back home, our walter reed. they don't do it to be honored. they don't do it to be celebrated. they do it because they love their families and they love their neighborhoods and they love their country. these men and women should inspire all of us in this room to live up to those same standards. to be worthy of their trust. to do our jobs with the same fidelity and the same integrity and the same sense of purpose and the same love of country. if we are only focused on profits or ratings or polls,
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then we are contributing to the cynicism that so many people feel right now. [applause] and so those of us in this room tonight, we are incredibly lucky. the fact is, we can do better. all of us. those of us in public office, those of us in the press, those who produce entertainment for our kids, those with power, those with influence, all of us, including myself, we can strive to value those things that i suspect led most of us to do the work that we do in the first place. because we believed in something that was true. we believed in service. in the idea that we can have a lasting, positive impact on the lives of the people around us. that is our obligation. that is a task we should gladly
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embrace on behalf of all of those folks who are counting on us. on behalf of this country that has given us so much. thank you all for the great work you do. god bless you all, may god bless the united states of america. [applause] >> thank you, mr. president. without further ado, mr. conan o'brien. [applause] >> thank you. thank you. please remain seated. that is not necessary. [applause] [laughter]
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thank you, don't stand, that wouldn't be right. good evening, thank you, mr. president, mrs. obama, distinguished members of the press and bon jovi. [laughter] yes, it is an honor to share the stage with the president. when you think about it, he and i are a lot alike. we both went to harvard, we both have two children and we both told joe biden we did not have extra tickets for tonight's event. [laughter] we also have something else in common, i too recently got in trouble for talking about a public official's good looks. it was when i would not shut up about that stone cold fox, secretary of transportation ray lahood. oh, man. i like the cut of his jib. [laughter] president obama, you had some great jokes. it was a pleasure watching you stand here and do what i do. now it is only fair that i get to do what you do. that is right, ladies and
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gentlemen, for the next 15 minutes i will be mired in a dysfunctional standoff with congress. this is going to be fun. [laughter] i would like to formally congratulate the president on his reelection. congratulations. [applause] as you all know, he is hard at work reading jobs. since he was first selected, the number of popes has doubled. [laughter] and the number of tonight show hosts has tripled. congratulations. [laughter] while i'm at it, i would like to congratulate president george w. bush on big dedication of his presidential library. yes, the library has millions of books, articles, and documents and if you go, you can be the first to read them. [laughter] you can't hurt me. ladies and gentlemen, let's get
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going. right here at the start i am going to share something with you people and it does not leave this room. i say this with absolute confidence, because we are on c- span. [laughter] who doesn't love c-span, seriously? c-span. an entire channel shot the backup camera on a ford explorer. congratulations to c-span for winning the bid to broadcast this event. they beat out hd tv two, tvc south america and the hilton hotel how to check out channel. [laughter] that is right, the hilton. it is great to be here at the hilton. is it just me or is it time to stop using priceline to book this event? i love the hilton. i love their motto, sorry the radisson was booked. i was worried that because of the sequester we would be forced to hold this event at a less prestigious hotel then the dc hilton. then i was told that was not
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possible. [laughter] i do want to thank the hilton for accommodating us. they were kind enough to reschedule a cash for gold seminar. [laughter] by the way, for those of you here for the cash for gold seminar, that has been moved to salon be on the mezzanine. and if joe biden asks, there are no extra tickets for that, either. quick announcement, before we really get going, before we continue, if any of you are live tweeting this event, please use the #incapableoflivinginthemoment. [laughter] yeah. yeah. yeah. also, to any u.s. senators here tonight, if you would like to switch your dessert or your position on gay marriage, please signal a waiter. [laughter]
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speaking of dinner, tonight's entrees are halibut, and filet mignon. or as cnn reported, lasagna and couscous. [laughter] there is a gavel here, and i don't know why. [gavel pounds] here is a fun fact about tonight's food, everything you it was personally shot by wayne lapierre. don't worry, it was during a home invasion. the fish came in through the window. it wasn't peppercorn, it was buckshot. incidentally, you may not know this, but wayne lapierre is merely the executive vice president of the nra. which begs the question, how freaking crazy do you have to be to be the actual president of the nra? [laughter] [applause] he is not even at the top.
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[laughter] i would like to acknowledge that earlier this evening there was some confusion with the seating chart. for a moment, someone accidentally sat governor chris christie with the republicans. that was awkward, and i apologize. very awkward. speaking of tables, before dinner, i had a chance to mingle, you probably saw me. i worked the crowd, shook some hands and sold my twitter account to al jazeera for $500 million. they will buy anything. it is an absolute joy to be her at the white house correspondents dinner. last year, tom brokaw criticized this event for having too many superstars and a-list celebrities. when i told him i would be attending this year, he said, that is more like it. [laughter] that should not be funny to you. but this is really a star- studded event. this year, you have taken it to new heights. i have to congratulate you.
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you have some of the guy from "duck dynasty." which can only mean one thing, the guys from ?storage wars? said no. i love "duck dynasty," don't get me wrong. i really don't think the whistle oh, my god, it works. he is here. i always hated that one. as some of you know, this is my second time speaking at this event. i was 18 years ago in 1995, a lot has changed since then. today you can get real-time information on world events from something small enough to fit in the palm of your hand. back in 1995, we called that george stephanopoulos. [laughter] i can see if george is here because there is a crouton in the way. [laughter] it is amazing to think how much
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our country has changed in 18 years. think about it. if in 1995 he told me that in 2013, we would have an african- american president with a middle name hussein, who was just reelected to a second term in a sluggish economy, i would have said, oh, you must have run against mitt romney. [laughter] by the way, no offense, i do congratulate you on your victory, but as a late-night comedian, i was kind of pulling for the rich guy whose horse danced in the olympics. [laughter] the demographics of this country have been rapidly changing over the past two decades. i look forward to hosting this event 18 years from now.
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then, my opening line will be, [speaking spanish] si. especialmente, presidente mario lopez. my prior experience has taught me how these dinners work. if the president laughs, everyone laughs. if the fox news table laughs, a little girl just fell off her bike. [laughter] how are you doing, bill? i'll be washington news mediator tonight, including the stars of online journalism. i did the huffington post has a table. which has me wondering, if you are here, who is covering miley cyrus's latest nip slip? who is assembling today's top 25 yogurt related tweets?
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[laughter] just before dinner, i tried to say hello to every on huffington, but she made me watch a 30-second ad first. [laughter] a lot of online stars in the room, but unfortunately not judge couldn't make it. he had a prior commitment to teach a web design class in 1997. the washington print media is also joining us this evening. the print media are here for two very good reasons. food and shelter. [laughter] you know, some people say print media is dying, but i don't believe it. neither does my blacksmith. [laughter] you have got to meet zachariah, he is great.
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newsweek, which after 80 years published its last print issue. time magazine might be gloating, but they really shouldn't, because time will outlive newsweek a way juliett outlived romeo. read the play, it is very smart. [laughter] things are so tough for media, reuters is having its after party right here at the hilton. because nothing says we are having a great here like having your after party at the same table where you just had dinner. [laughter] with that in mind, reuters is asking everyone here to leave a little wine at the bottom of the glass. [laughter] to be fair, print media still has a big star in bob woodward. got to give it up for bob woodward. [applause] earlier this evening, a waiter asked him if he wanted regular or decaf and he said, stop threatening me!
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some big names in television news. when it comes to television news, we have a divided landscape. fox news is watched by conservatives, msnbc watched by liberals and cnn is watched by people who clean the offices at cnn. [laughter] [oohs] oh, it gets worst. cnn's ratings are so low, when it comes up, james earl jones says, you are watching cnn? what the hell? i have to say, in the past two years, cnn has made some odd moves. it replaced the -- popular larry king with one of the footman from "downton abbey." it is good to see my old friends at msnbc.
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chris matthews is here. chris matthews has the only show where the commercial exists just so they can wipe the spittle off the lens. [laughter] during the boston coverage on msnbc last week, chuck todd stopped a pundit from speculating on unverified information. there is no joke here. i'm just letting the people at cnn know that you can do that. [laughter] this is a learning experience. fox news star bill o'reilly, he has become quite the author. two recent bestsellers, " killing kennedy" and "killing lincoln." bill o'reilly is now working on his next book, due out this fall, this time about the killing of jesus. it will be the first time in history that his death is blamed on obamacare.
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[laughter] two quick shout outs to pbs and npr. pbs -- yes! [applause] those people love to party. be safe, wear a tote bag. it works. you have got to love npr. still the number one source for news delivered as if there is a toddler sleeping in the next room. [laughter] shh! nbc news is in the house. they have had a rough go of it. the today show let go of ann curry. after being told that an curry said, how broker tells the world that he crafted answer the white house and i am getting fired? al is the reason there are no more chores of the white house, they're still hosing down. [crowd oohs] brian williams is here. i am a big fan of your show.
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if you haven't seen it, imagine brand delivering the evening news on a different floor of the building, a little later, with a slightly different type. it is a mind blower. check it out. as i look all around the room, i realize this is one big high school cafeteria. that is all it is. think about it. fox is the jocks. msnbc is the nerds. bloggers are the goths. npr is the table for kids with peanut allergies. [laughter] al jazeera is the weird foreign- exchange student nobody talks to. and media, you are the poor kid
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who died sophomore year in a car crash. [laughter] cheer up, we dedicate the yearbook to you. of course, the biggest or that people covered this past year was the republicans failure to recapture the white house. hard to believe they did not fare better with the sort of celebrities like ted nugent and meatloaf. they underestimated the number of voters who still drive carpeted vans. [laughter] the republican party's on the mend. one rising star on the right is senator marco rubio. or as he is known in the republican party, our black guy. [laughter] as of today come in the u.s. senate has a number of african- american senators. two. two. in other words, there are now more african-americans in the senate and in a mumford and sons concert.
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thank you, younger people. paul ryan -- i don't understand! what's he babbling about? [laughter] who is this man? paul ryan, he really burst through when he ran for vice president. after the election, he said president obama was reelected because of the high turnout of urban voters. when he was asked how he liked his coffee he said, no milk, no sugar, just urban. [laughter] there is rnc chairman reince priebus. tonight he is sitting between his brothers, lather and repeat. [laughter] house majority leader eric
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cantor is here. or as i like to refer to him, yet another jewish republican from the south. also joining us, a condiment from new york named steve israel. he is from new york and his name is israel. there is pandering, and then there is pandering. that is like having a congressman from south carolina named jesus h. gun. [laughter] you've got to use this thing, it is fantastic. [gavel pounds] i mentioned chris christie earlier, governor christie and shaquille o'neal are sitting at the same dinner table. let's give it up for the real unsung hero tonight, their waiter. [laughter]
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that poor bastard. going to lose an arm. and we have one or two supreme court justices. they seem divided over same-sex marriage. the liberal justices favorite while the conservatives oppose any life long union between two men, unless it is antonin scalia and clarence thomas. what the hell was that? speaker john boehner is not here tonight. speaker banner and president obama are still struggling to get along. president obama and john boehner, kind of like a blind date between anderson cooper and rachel maddow. in theory, they understand each other's position, but deep down, you know nothing is ever going to happen. [laughter] [applause] [gavel pounds]
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speaking of nothing happening, we are all hoping for nothing to happen with north korea. that got me wondering, what is with kim jong-un? in the past, we have had really scary enemies like saddam hussain and hitler. now, suddenly our nemesis is a pouty teenage boy who dresses like rosie o'donnell at the emmys. kim jong-un does not understand that we aren't afraid of him. what that guy doesn't get is that we already have an unstable peninsula that will ultimately bring down america. it is called florida. [laughter] [applause] yes it is. yes, president obama has a lot on his plate right now. he is at the very nice stage where there are no more secrets left to come out about him.
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we all know that he lived in indonesia as a child, studied at a muslim seminary and occasionally ate dog. from the beginning, a kid who had his eyes set on the u.s. presidency. [laughter] check, check, and check. here i come. i know the relationship between the president and the press can seem a bit strained at times. some in this room have accused him of being distant and aloof. when i asked the president about it earlier, he said, oh, and then walked away. [laughter] it is only natural, but mr. president election was less exciting than the first time around in 2008. an election night, you celebrated with hundreds of thousands of people in chicago's grant park. it was fascinating. this time around, you split the hot dog did not ask about. it did not have the same buzz.
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it has been several months since you were reelected, so i am curious, why are you still sending everyone five e-mails a day asking for more money? you won. do you have a gambling problem we don't know about? did you put it all on gonzaga? you did, didn't you? he did. [gavel pounds] president obama has already made a lot of changes in his second term. you recently appointed john kerry and chuck hagel. smart moves. the only two people in the united to look even more tired than you. [laughter] a great strategy. mr. president, you will leave office a very young man. the presidency has taken it's toll. you are starting to look like a judge on "law and order." just say, you are on thin ice, counselor. you could have that part right
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away. your hair is so white, it could be a member of your cabinet. [laughter] [crowd oohs] he can handle it. he recently picked the new treasury secretary, jack lew. if the president ever has to let him go, he can say, it is not lew, it's me. [laughter] the quote a city must but the president is that he is always the coolest guy in the room. that is what everyone says. he is the coolest guy in the room. here is my question. who else is in that room? it is not hard to be the cool one when the other guys in the room r biden, hagel, and carry. i would be cool to if i was in a room where steve ville sackett showing someone how to do the harlem shake. i have made some jokes about the president this evening. i am looking forward to my audit. [laughter]
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it is coming. i know. i would like to take a moment here and change gears and say some into the president. regarding the events of the past two weeks. some of you may not know this. i grew up in boston. but parents still live there. my brother, luke, raised his family in watertown. i would like to take this opportunity to thank, you mr. president, for visiting that great city and helping people begin to heal with your inspiring words. you made a huge difference. [applause] it has been said recently that you don't mess with boston. as someone who grew up there, i would like to echo that sentiment. it is really pretty simple. if you're going to pick on a city, don't choose one where nine out of 10 people are related to a cop. don't do it. it is stupid.
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that includes myself. i have one more thing to mention before i go. everyone is obsessed with washington these days. we saw how you went crazy for "house of cards" "homeland", hollywood can't get enough of your world. i'm excited to announce that they are going to make a television miniseries about the power players here in washington. they just finished the casting, and i would like to announce who is going to play who. this is big. vice president joe biden is going to be played by bob barker. [laughter] former white house adviser david axelrod will be played by higgins from magnum pi. this was also produced by steven spielberg, by the way. the present of paul ryan will be played by mr. bean. [laughter]
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senator chuck schumer will be played by grandpa munster. [laughter] senator harry reid will be played by the old man from the american gothic painting. fox news ceo roger ailes will be played by -- speaker boehner will be played by tan mom. secretary of homeland security janet napolitano will be played by paul giamatti. [laughter] former white house chief of staff and chicago mayor rahm
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emanuel will be played by stewie from "family guy." secretary of state john kerry will be played by any easter island head. i cannot tell those two apart. [laughter] supreme court chief justice john roberts will be played by buzz light year. senator mitch mcconnell will be played by dame edna. cnn anchor wolf blitzer will be played by a furby. lockyear will be played by the facemelt guy from "raiders of the lost ark." and white house press secretary jay carney will be played by
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ralphie from "a christmas story." ladies and gentlemen, this is a huge honor. m [applause] >> great job, conan. that was awesome. we want to thank everyone for a really terrific night. especially my family and friends. everybody in the room tonight. thank you very much. it was a great night.
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[applause] we ask that you stay seated, at least around your table until the president and his party depart or its they will be escorted out by the incoming president the white house correspondents association. [applause] >> next, q and a.
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after that, irish president michael higgins.

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