"It really is good", Trump said during the annual Gridiron press dinner in Washington on Saturday night, according to a White House pool reporter's transcript.
The Trumps have not been very active on the DC social scene, with the exception of a handful of dinners at the Trump International Hotel on Pennsylvania Avenue, the June wedding of Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin, and the Ford's Theater Annual Gala a year ago. Here, in the crowded basement ballroom of a swanky D.C. hotel, the mockery is at least kind of the point: For 133 years, journalists have invited a constellation of Washington's bright stars in media and politics to reach across whatever distances divide them for a good verbal kick in the shin - and a hearty laugh about it together.
"So many people have been leaving the White House".
Created in 1885, the Gridiron Club sponsors an annual dinner featuring skits and songs seeking to make fun of politicians from both parties, particularly the sitting president.
A cast member playing Hillary Clinton offered her version of the song "You're So Vain", the title referring to her, but the lyrics aimed at the president: "You walked into my West Wing/My White House or so I thought/Your tie strategically dropped below your belt/Your hair it was apricot".
Just days after he lost trusted communications director Hope Hicks, and son-in-law/adviser Jared Kushner had his security clearance downgraded, Mr. Trump quipped, "We finally have it running like a fine-tuned machine". I stuck up for her for years and now I say, "They were all right". Not so much. The humorless left is in full meltdown mode after last night's Gridiron dinner at which Trump made some hilarious remarks about the various idiocies of the media and Democrats during his first full year in office.
"I am accomplishing a lot in Washington and have never had a better time doing something, and especially since this is for the American People!" he added. Now the question everybody keeps asking is, 'Who is going to be the next to leave?
Turning toward the first lady, Trump, aware that the line did not get the reception he expected, asked her if that was "terrible honey? I just have an easier time admitting it".
Apologising that the dinner was behind schedule, the President said he was late "because Jared couldn't get through security". "As far as the risk of dealing with a madman is concerned, that's his problem, not mine", he said.
President Trump didn't spare himself, either. There are enough gold doubloons in the city of New Orleans you could literally write your name across a building in huge gold letters.
U.S. Sen. Tom Cotton of Arkansas spoke on behalf of the Republicans. By tradition, the Gridiron dinner is not televised. One of the best ever.
On his media habits: "I better wrap it up. This might be the most fun I've had since watching your faces on election night", he said.