The association’s president Olivier Knox made the announcement on Monday. For several months, he had been leaning against inviting a comic, and he had been conferring with other members about the change.
The dinner is a key date on Washington’s social calendar. But its meaning has changed amid constant attacks on the media and increasing political polarization. Booking Chernow instead of a stand-up performer is a recognition that the annual dinner changes dramatically when the president isn’t there.
President Trump has snubbed the event two years in a row, and there is little reason to believe that he will attend next dinner, which is scheduled for April 27, 2019.
So the association had to rethink things.