Every year, even in the age of President Donald Trump, the White House Correspondents’ Dinner is one of the social events of the spring. For almost 100 years, journalists, government officials and celebrities have gotten together to crack jokes and eat expensive meals. The event has been attended by Frank Sinatra and Duke Ellington, and in 2011, President Barack Obama roasted Donald Trump (who was in attendance), and some speculate that night was the moment when Trump decided he wanted Obama’s job.
However, this year, President Trump won’t be in attendance. His decision came via a Tweet in February. While it’s not traditional for a president to skip the event, Trump’s ongoing war with the media had many expecting that he wouldn’t be stopping by the Washington Hilton on the evening of the event.
The last president to skip the event was Ronald Reagan in 1981, though President Reagan was recovering from a gunshot wound inflicted during an assassination attempt only days before. Nixon also skipped the dinner twice.
Instead, President Trump announced Saturday morning (via Twitter) that he will be holding a rally next weekend in Pennsylvania.
The White House has not said where the rally will be held, and Trump’s website does not have any rallies listed. His last event was in Nashville in the middle of March.
President Trump has held a number of rallies in Pennsylvania since he was elected, including one in December where he thanked the African-Americans who “didn’t come out to vote.”