As if being a “Man Show” alumnus and Sarah Silverman’s ex-boyfriend weren’t enough, Jimmy Kimmel is slated to host the 98th White House Correspondents’ Dinner next April.
This event is a longstanding tradition, attended by members of the press corps, Hollywood elites, high-ranking government officials and, traditionally, the president and first lady.
Comedians have hosted this event in the past, including Saturday Night Live’s “Weekend Update” writer and host Seth Meyers, political satirist Stephen Colbert, and comic Wanda Sykes.
It was Sykes’ over-the-top jokes during her 2009 hosting appearance that returned the annual dinner to its long-lost status as a national conversation-piece. During her routine, Sykes called Rush Limbaugh “treasonous” for expressing his hope that President Obama’s agenda fails.
“I think maybe Rush Limbaugh was the 20th hijacker,” Sykes snarked, “but he was so strung out on Oxycontin, he missed his flight.”
Reuters journalist Caren Bohan, president of the White House Correspondents’ Association, is clearly hoping for something as newsworthy, but perhaps not as controversial. “Jimmy’s humor is sophisticated and edgy while appealing to a wide audience,” Bohan said.
Proceeds from the event will provide awards for excellence in journalism and benefit a scholarship for aspiring journalists.
“I look forward to being a part of the White House Correspondents’ Association Dinner,” the host of the ABC late-night talk show Jimmy Kimmel Live! said in a statement. “I love dinner.”