President Donald Trump made the right decision in deciding to skip this year's White House Correspondents' Dinner, Ari Fleischer, former White House spokesman for President George W. Bush, tells Newsmax TV.
"Why would he want to go and why would the press want to invite him? That dinner is everything that's wrong with Washington in so many ways," Fleischer, president of Fleischer Sports Communications, said Monday to Steve Malzberg on "America Talks Live."
"Frankly it's good that Donald Trump is the only honest person around now who says, 'you don't like me, I don't like you, so why should we pretend to go to dinner together, one of these gigantic couple of thousand people dinners, where you make fun of me and I make fun of you?'''
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"It's refreshing actually just to hear Donald Trump say that because in Washington you're not supposed to talk like that, you're not supposed to act like that but everybody knows that."
Over the weekend, Trump, who calls the press "the enemy of the people," announced he will not attend the April 29 bash in which reporters and politicians cheekily roast each other.
On Sunday, White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders told George Stephanopoulos on ABC News's "This Week" program: "I think it's … kind of naive of us to think that we can all walk into a room for a couple of hours and pretend that some of that tension isn't there.
"You know, one of the things we say in the south if a Girl Scout egged your house, would you buy cookies from her? I think that this is a pretty similar scenario. There's no reason for him to go in and sit and pretend like this is going to be just another Saturday night."
Fleischer noted the White House Correspondents Dinner has little to do with news gathering and more of a show business event.
"Everybody knows that dinner is now way over the top, red carpet, live arrival, Hollywood guests, what does that have to do with journalist gathering news?" Fleischer told Malzberg.
Trump will be the first president to avoid the dinner since Jimmy Carter, who skipped in 1978 and 1980. Richard Nixon also stayed away in 1974 and 1972.
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