The journalists at Good Morning America gushed over Barack Obama's performance at the White House Correspondents Dinner on Saturday. On Sunday and Monday's program, the reporters enthused over the "hilarious" "comedian-in-chief" who was "on fire."
On Monday's program, former Democratic operative turned journalist George Stephanopoulos fawned over a mock video that Obama participated in: "He did this film, a take-off on Lincoln, where he plays Daniel Day Lewis playing Obama...which was hilarious." Correspondent Lara Spencer hyped, "[Obama] was on fire." Jon Karl lauded, "He's always been pretty good at this. I think he's gotten better."
On Sunday's GMA, Bianna Golodryga hyperbolically announced, "Comedian-in-chief. President Obama takes the mic at the annual white house correspondents' dinner."
Sunday GMA host Dan Harris actually pressed Stephanopoulos about the cozy relationship between the press, celebrities and the President. He wondered, "...There have been some critics who say that this thing has become too focused on celebrities. And that, in fact, it makes the media look even more elitist and even more separated from the people they're– we're supposed to be serving?"
Stephanopoulos clearly wasn't interested in that argument, dismissing, "You know, I guess. You know, I've heard the criticism." He added, "But, this is just a night of fun, a night for the politicians and the press to get together."
Unsurprisingly, GMA on Sunday and Monday did not highlight the joke that Conan O'Brien (who hosted the event) made at Stephanopoulos's expense. O'Brien mocked, "Today you can get real-time information on world events from something small enough to fit in the palm of your hand. Back in '95 we called that George Stephanopoulos. I can't see if George is here because there's a crouton in the way!"
A transcript of the exchanges on Monday's GMA follow:
GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS: Meanwhile, on a much lighter note, the White House correspondents dinner over the weekend. The President is really honing his standup skills. Taking shots at the press and himself. Take a look.
BARACK OBAMA: I understand, second term, need a burst of new energy. So, we borrowed one of Michelle's tricks. [Montage of Obama with Michelle's hair cut.] I thought this looked pretty good. But, no bounce. I really do respect the press. I recognize that the press and I 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.
JON KARL: You know, the President seemed to be enjoying himself there. He's always been pretty good at this. I think he's gotten better, George. With the series of news events we have been through over the last weeks, month, it's one of the rare chances he's had to get up there and tell some jokes.
STEPHANOPOULOS: He did seem to enjoy it. He loves going after people. He loves when he's going after the press. Okay, Jon. Thanks very much.
LARA SPENCER: The president is quite a funny man. He was on fire.
LARRY HACKETT: He really was. I mean, the jokes he was cracking were great. I mean, the joke about I'm not the young Muslim socialist I used to be.
SAM CHAMPION: So good.
GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS: It's also gotten all so elaborate. He did this film, a take-off on Lincoln, where he plays Daniel Day Lewis playing Obama–
ROBIN ROBERTS: That was funny.
STEPHANOPOULOS: – which was hilarious!
ROBERTS: Especially from the couch watching on CSPAN with my pint of ice cream. It was great.
-- Scott Whitlock is the senior news analyst for the Media Research Center. Click here to follow him on Twitter.