Barack Obama, Spock, Darth Vadar

Alex Wong/Getty Images, LucasFilm, CBS

Looks like the Force is stronger now with the commander in chief.

President Barack Obama rebounded from a snafu of Galactic Empire proportions after he inadvertently fused two disparate Star Wars and Star Trek references last week during a press conference, in the process coining the phrase "Jedi mind meld." ("Jedi mind trick": yes. "Vulcan mind meld": yes. Jedi-Vulcan mashup: no, oh, no.) 

And so now the president is making amends with the nerd herd: At the Gridiron Dinner Saturday in Washington, D.C., Obama cheekily poked fun at his faux pas while also slyly knocking more than a few political personalities.

"After a very public mix-up last week, my communications team has provided me with an easy way to distinguish between Star Trek and Star Wars," he 'fessed up to attendees.

"Spock is what Maureen Dowd calls me," he said, name-checking the lacerating New York Times columnist, before giving big-ups to the Speaker of the House: "Darth Vader is what John Boehner calls me."

And if that didn't get a good enough laugh (it did), the president made sure to further hawk his sci-fi bona fides.

"And in the words of one of my favorite Star Trek characters—Captain James T. Kirk of the USS Enterprise—'May the force be with you,'" Obama cracked.

Well, at least the president dared to boldly go where no fan has gone before. Now, about that Death Star petition...

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