WASHINGTON, April 22 (UPI) -- President George W. Bush skipped the customary presidential comedy routine at the White House Correspondents Association dinner in Washington Saturday night.
"I had looked forward to poking fun tonight but in light of this week's tragedy at Virginia Tech, I decided not to try to be funny," Bush told an audience made up of journalists and guest celebrities.
Instead, he left the comedy to veteran impressionist Rich Little, who channeled U.S. presidents dating back to Richard Nixon, as well as presidential contender Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., "60 Minutes" commentator Andy Rooney and longtime "Tonight" show host Johnny Carson.
Little -- who was booked as a non-political antidote to the barbed material of Comedy Central's Stephen Colbert at last year's dinner -- said going into the engagement he expected the press corps to be a tough crowd, and that's the way it worked out, Editor & Publisher reported.
However, Little told E&P the president told him his performance was "absolutely perfect."
The dinner featured a surprise appearance by White House Press Secretary Tony Snow, who has been on leave from his job for several weeks for treatment of a recurrence of cancer.