Monday 25 July 2016

Obama mocks Putin's bare chest photos at White House dinner

Published 04/05/2014 | 09:01

President Barack Obama joked about Russian president Vladimir Putin and issues closer to home as he headlined the White House Correspondents' Association dinner.

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The annual tradition has the president mocking others and himself as celebrities mingle with journalists and politicians.

Mr Obama made fun of conservative television hosts' talk about Mr Putin's bare chest, and he joked about opposition claims that he had been born overseas instead of the US.

Looking ahead to a possible successor in office, he said it will be a lot harder for Republicans to prove that Hillary Rodham Clinton was born in Kenya.

The president also poked fun at CNN's extensive coverage of the search for the missing Malaysia Airlines plane.

He said he was still jet-lagged from his visit in recent days to Malaysia and added: "The lengths we have to go to get CNN coverage these days!"

Elizabeth Chambers and Armie Hammer attend the 100th Annual White House Correspondents' Association Dinner at the Washington Hilton on May 3, 2014 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images)
Elizabeth Chambers and Armie Hammer attend the 100th Annual White House Correspondents' Association Dinner at the Washington Hilton on May 3, 2014 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images)
Editor in chief of Yahoo News Megan Liberman attends the Yahoo News/ABCNews Pre-White House Correspondents' dinner reception pre-party at Washington Hilton on May 3, 2014 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Andrew H. Walker/Getty Images for Yahoo News)
Actress Bellamy Young attends the 100th Annual White House Correspondents' Association Dinner at the Washington Hilton on May 3, 2014 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images)
Richard Marx attends the 100th Annual White House Correspondents' Association Dinner at the Washington Hilton on May 3, 2014 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images)
Actress Kristen Bell attends the 100th Annual White House Correspondents' Association Dinner at the Washington Hilton on May 3, 2014 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images)
Olivia Munn attends the 100th Annual White House Correspondents' Association Dinner at the Washington Hilton on May 3, 2014 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images)
Diane Sawyer (L) and Darby Stanchfield attend the Yahoo News/ABCNews Pre-White House Correspondents' dinner reception pre-party at Washington Hilton on May 3, 2014 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Andrew H. Walker/Getty Images for Yahoo News)
Olympic Skier Lindsey Vonn attends the 100th Annual White House Correspondents' Association Dinner at the Washington Hilton on May 3, 2014 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images)
Actress Katie Lowes attends the 100th Annual White House Correspondents' Association Dinner at the Washington Hilton on May 3, 2014 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images)
AnnaSophia Robb and Ronan Farrow attend the 100th Annual White House Correspondents' Association Dinner at the Washington Hilton on May 3, 2014 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images)
Actor Michael Kelly attends the 100th Annual White House Correspondents' Association Dinner at the Washington Hilton on May 3, 2014 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images)
Katie Couric (L) and Dan Bucatinsky attend the Yahoo News/ABCNews Pre-White House Correspondents' dinner reception pre-party at Washington Hilton on May 3, 2014 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Andrew H. Walker/Getty Images for Yahoo News)
Editor in chief of Yahoo News Megan Liberman (L) and chief Washington correspondent of Yahoo News Olivier Knox attend the Yahoo News/ABCNews Pre-White House Correspondents' dinner reception pre-party at Washington Hilton on May 3, 2014 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Andrew H. Walker/Getty Images for Yahoo News)
Katie Couric (L) and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar attend the Yahoo News/ABCNews Pre-White House Correspondents' dinner reception pre-party at Washington Hilton on May 3, 2014 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Andrew H. Walker/Getty Images for Yahoo News)
Actress Sofía Vergara attends the Yahoo News/ABCNews Pre-White House Correspondents' dinner reception pre-party at Washington Hilton on May 3, 2014 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Andrew H. Walker/Getty Images for Yahoo News)
Actress Sofía Vergara attends the Yahoo News/ABCNews Pre-White House Correspondents' dinner reception pre-party at Washington Hilton on May 3, 2014 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Andrew H. Walker/Getty Images for Yahoo News)
Snowboarder Jamie Anderson attends the 100th Annual White House Correspondents' Association Dinner at the Washington Hilton on May 3, 2014 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images)
Arianna Huffington (R) attends the 100th Annual White House Correspondents' Association Dinner at the Washington Hilton on May 3, 2014 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Larry Busacca/Getty Images)
Olympic gold medalist Sage Kotsenburg attends the 100th Annual White House Correspondents' Association Dinner at the Washington Hilton on May 3, 2014 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images)
Eric Holder, U.S. Attorney General (R) and Sharon Malone attend the 100th Annual White House Correspondents' Association Dinner at the Washington Hilton on May 3, 2014 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images)
Matt Lauer (R) attends the 100th Annual White House Correspondents' Association Dinner at the Washington Hilton on May 3, 2014 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images)
Athlete Tim Tebow attends the 100th Annual White House Correspondents' Association Dinner at the Washington Hilton on May 3, 2014 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images)
Diane Lane and news anchor Wolf Blitzer attend the 100th Annual White House Correspondents' Association Dinner at the Washington Hilton on May 3, 2014 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - MAY 03: Carson Daly, Natalie Morales, Al Roker, Matt Lauer and Savannah Guthrie attend the 100th Annual White House Correspondents' Association Dinner at the Washington Hilton on May 3, 2014 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images)
Jessica Simpson arrives at the 100th Annual White House Correspondents' Association Dinner at the Washington Hilton on May 3, 2014, in Washington D.C. (Photo by Allison Shelley/Getty Images)
Actress Katie Lowes and Guillermo Diaz arrive at the 100th Annual White House Correspondents' Association Dinner at the Washington Hilton on May 3, 2014, in Washington D.C. (Photo by Allison Shelley/Getty Images)
Norah O'Donnell attends the 100th Annual White House Correspondents' Association Dinner at the Washington Hilton on May 3, 2014 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images)
Claudia Jordan attends the 100th Annual White House Correspondents' Association Dinner at the Washington Hilton on May 3, 2014 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images)
US President Barack Obama speaks at the annual White House Correspondent's Association Gala at the Washington Hilton hotel May 3, 2014 in Washington, D.C. The dinner is an annual event attended by journalists, politicians and celebrities. (Photo by Olivier Douliery-Pool/Getty Images)
Greta Van Susteren and actress Katharine McPhee attend the 100th Annual White House Correspondents' Association Dinner at the Washington Hilton on May 3, 2014 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images)
Jeffrey Tambor attends the 100th Annual White House Correspondents' Association Dinner at the Washington Hilton on May 3, 2014 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images)
Arianna Huffington attends the 100th Annual White House Correspondents' Association Dinner at the Washington Hilton on May 3, 2014 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Larry Busacca/Getty Images)

The president also turned the humour on himself and his difficult 2013, including the deeply troubled roll-out of the website for his health care overhaul.

First Lady Michelle Obama accompanied him to the black tie event, and Joel McHale, star of the NBC series Community, was the dinner's featured entertainer.

Celebrities attending included Sofia Vergara and the stars of Washington-centric shows like Veep and Scandal.

The dinner has often come at key moments of Mr Obama's presidency.

In 2011, he showed up the day before special operations troops killed Osama bin Laden. Last year's dinner came nearly two weeks after the deadly Boston Marathon.

This time, the US and Europe are anxiously watching Ukraine and Russia's role in the turbulence in the eastern region of the former Soviet state.

The correspondent's association, which represents the White House press corps, is celebrating its 100th anniversary.

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