As he took the podium to the rap song “All I Do Is Win” by DJ Khaled, rather than the traditional “Hail to the Chief,” President Barack Obama joked, “Rush Limbaugh warned you about this. Second term, baby! We’re changing things around here a little bit.” That introduction set the tone for a fun speech from the President where he took aim at everyone, from the media to himself.
The President started by making fun of his own age with a mocked-up cover of a magazine called Senior Leisure, with him on the cover. Obama admits that he’s getting older, joking, “These days I look in the mirror and I have to admit I’m not the strapping young Muslim Socialist I used to be.”
Obama also talked about the criticism he received for referring to California Attorney General Kamala Harris as “the best looking attorney general in the country.” “As you might imagine, I got in trouble when I got back home,” the President says, “Who knew Eric Holder (U.S. Attorney General) was so sensitive?”
His poor performance on the basketball court during the White House Easter Egg Roll was another source of jokes for the President. That day Obama was widely publicized for taking 22 shots, while only connecting with two of them. “That’s right, two hits, 20 misses,” he says, “The executives at NBC asked, ‘What’s your secret?'”
The President didn’t spare the media with his jokes. To a comment by New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd that he should be more like Michael Douglas’s character in “The American President,” Obama asked Douglas, who was in attendance, “What’s your secret, man? Could it be your an actor in an Aaron Sorkin liberal fantasy?”
He also called out new media, joking, “I remember when Buzzfeed was just something I did in college around 2 a.m.,” which drew big laughs from the crowd. “It’s true,” he added as an afterthought. He summed up his jokes about the media with the thought, “My job is to be president. Your job is to keep me humble. Frankly, I think I’m doing my job better.”
The President also had some fun with Republican party members, including Sheldon Adelson, a business magnate who spent $100 million in 2012 on negative ads. “Sheldon would have been better off to offer me $100 million dollars to drop out of the race,” Obama says, “I probably wouldn’t have taken it, but I would’ve thought about it … Michelle [Obama] would have taken it.”
The President says that no matter what he does to connect with Republican leaders, there’s still some people who want more from him. “‘Why don’t you get a drink with Mitch McConnell?’ they ask. Really? Why don’t you get a drink with Mitch McConnell,” he says to laughs and applause.
When he was done having his fun, Obama wrapped up his remarks talking about the recent hardships the U.S. has faced, from the Boston marathon bombing, to the explosion in West, Tex. “When the days seem darkest,” he says, “we have seen humanity shine at it’s brightest.” As a final thought, he added that those with power, both politically and in the press, himself included, can do better to have a lasting positive impact on those around them.