Seriously, who does that guy think he is? The leader of the free world?

And make no mistake: President Barack Obama deciding that he is too busy to attend the Gridiron’s annual banquet later this month is a slap. He’s the first president since Grover Cleveland to skip the white-tie-and-tails affair in his first year in office.

The official line from the Gridiron Club — a society of Washington reporters, columnists, and bureau chiefs — is, “We understand.”

But some Gridiron veterans make clear they don’t understand. Chicago Tribune columnist Clarence Page said, “People feel uncommonly saddened, miffed and burned.

“I don’t think he understands the implications of not coming to the club in the first year. It’s not your ordinary state dinner. I think it would be helpful for him and his relations with the Washington establishment to come to the club.”

Normally I think Clarence Page is pretty reasonable, but let me put on my Miss Manners hat for a second just so the Washington Establishment Press Corps doesn’t commit a faux pas: you know what’s more declassé than not going to a party? Publicly whining about someone who stiffed your invitation. Have some dignity. I don’t go to parties, throw parties, party, or leave the house except to go to work and I know that much.

And, more to the point of Establishment Washington Journalism: “the implications”? Huh? Are journalists going to pooh-pooh his plans to not let the American economy melt down if he doesn’t stop by? Or merely taunt him a second time? (via)