Tuesday, April 19, 2011

My Representative Can Beat Up Your Representative

Noted in the American Airlines inflight magazine this month, Seth Meyers is slated to host the upcoming White House Correspondents' Association Dinner. A good choice I think. As the head writer of the catastrophically unfunny Saturday Night Live, he's well positioned to fill the shoes of past hosts like Wanda Sykes, Al Franken, and Yakov Smirnov.

He did say a few amusing things in his interview:

Like all comedians, one of my life’s goals has been to appear on C-SPAN.

Another thing he has in common with Al Franken.

Now that it’s happening, obviously there are some nerves. I’m incredibly honored to be asked. The WHCD strikes me as an incredibly American undertaking. The idea that you can tell jokes about the president in his presence is a really good reminder we’re not in Iran. Another good reminder: time zone.

It remains to be seen if Meyers even tries to make jokes "about" the President. For example, the kind of vicious jokes Stephen Colbert leveled at GW Bush while hosting this dinner in 2006. Today's liberal comedians, and shows like SNL, stay far away from anything resembling biting satire or social criticism when it comes to Obama. Instead, it's safe "jokes" about how smart he is compared to other politicians or how the American people aren't worthy of him or attacks on his critics, the kind of thing that Wanda Sykes did on behalf of Obama when hosting in 2009. Given his track record, I'll be shocked if anything resembling "jokes about Obama" are uttered by Meyers.

Here's my favorite part. When asked about the difference between hosting the ESPN sports awards and this gig, he had this to say:

Here’s the difference: At the ESPYs, everyone could beat me up. At the WHCD, I’m most afraid of Nancy Pelosi and Michele Bachmann.

Heh. Maybe it's not surprising that a guy afraid to tell jokes about Obama would also be afraid of our diminutive, mother of 28, Congressional Representative. No doubt Meyers will be saving his real jokes for the likes of Bachmann. Although I'd also be shocked if she shows her face in that den of Washington insiders and their media and entertainment industry fan boys.

Give Meyer's credit for his instincts though, if it's one thing you can say about Ms. Bachmann, she's not afraid to fight. Maybe Sarah Palin was thinking about her too when she said in Wisconsin this weekend:

"What we need from you, GOP, is to fight." Pointing to the national champion University of Wisconsin women's hockey team, Palin said the GOP could learn from its resolve and “needs to learn how to fight like a girl".

Another rousing example of Bachmann's spirit was evident in Robert Costa's piece at NRO today, a report on the recent meeting of the GOP House caucus, where she challenged the accommodationist elements of the leadership:

I told them that I have not altered my stance on Obamacare, and our need to cut spending and fight the deficit, whether we are in the majority or in the minority,” she says. “That was my point: that we cannot change what our focus was when the people gave us the gavel.”

“Why would we deviate from that when that is what the American people want to do?” Bachmann asks. “This is not about being negative toward leadership; it’s about continuing to take stances based on what people want us to fight for.”

Amen. To paraphrase Abe Lincoln, when he was being pressured to relieve US Grant of duty during the Civil War, despite all of her faults, we can't spare this woman, she fights. Keep your guard up Seth Meyers.