BY Leo Standora
DAILY NEWS STAFF WRITER
Saturday, June 20th 2009, 1:13 AM
President Barack Obama yuks it up at the Radio and Television Correspondents' Dinner.
He poked fun at other politicians, the economy, health care reform and other big problems facing the nation, and even his own White House team during the Washington, D.C. affair.
Referring to a picture of Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel riding a camel in Egypt, he said, "I admit, I was a little nervous about the whole situation. I said at the time, "This is a wild animal known to bite, kick and spit. And who knows what the camel could do?"
Of the effort to reform health care, he announced, "I have gained the support of the American Medical Association."
He then added, "It proves true the old expression that it's easier to catch flies with honey. And if honey doesn't work, feel free to use an open palm and a swift, downward wrist motion."
He told the audience he had been working to get the financial institutions and auto companies back on their feet.
"But you probably wouldn't understand the concept of troubled industries, working as you do in radio and television." He got more groans than laughs with this one.
Realizing he had touch a nerve, the President grinned and looked out at the audience and said "W-h-a-a-t! I can't joke about that."
Perhaps the funniest bit began with Obama declaring, "I have no ambition to run an auto company." He then went into a mock sales pitch for the Buick Enclave, exhorting the gathering, "C'mon, work with me here."
Obama also said he had a plan to jump-start the auto industry from his close friend, Oprah Winfrey.
The President said, "If each of you will look under your seat you will find that you get a car company." He added, "and Fox, you get AIG!"
Obama even managed to get laughs out of Secretary of State Clinton's broken elbow, saying the "Secret Service spotted Richard Holbrooke spraying WD40" all over the driveway where his boss fell.
"Now on top of the cost of health care and the recovery plan we have another fiscal problem. "Fortunately, the lawyers tell me Hillary is ready to settle."