Life Is No Picnic: White House Congressional Chowdown Gets Chop

President cancels Thursday evening confab, even as cooks prepared meals

Then House Speaker Newt Gingrich, R-Ga., poses with clowns for a picture at the congressional family picnic. July 29, 1996 (Maureen Keating/CQ Roll Call)

President Donald Trump announced he will “cancel and postpone” Thursday evening’s congressional picnic at the White House because “we’re all so busy.”

“I was just walking over to the Oval Office and thinking, ‘You know, it just doesn’t feel right to have a picnic for Congress when we’re working on doing something so important.’” 

He then said it will be rescheduled at a later date. 

Preparations for the picnic were well underway, with White House cooks prepping steaks and staff moving large cooler boxes in position between the residence and the Palm Room doors. 

“Our goal is to donate it,” a White House official said of the food that was meant for Thursday evening’s congressional picnic. “We are limited on what/who we can donate to, so we are determining next steps now.”

These congressional picnics have been fraught affairs as of late. President Barack Obama canceled the summer gathering not once but twice in 2013

But it does afford the opportunity for some great one-liners. As Washington Post humor columnist Alexandra Petri tweeted: “Missed steaks were made.” 

Get breaking news alerts and more from Roll Call on your iPhone or your Android.