Obama pardons Thanksgiving turkey
Obama pardons Thanksgiving turkey
WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama pardoned two turkeys in an annual Thanksgiving rite on Wednesday, saying he wanted to offer the birds a second chance.
“They say life is full of second chances, and this November I couldn’t agree more with that sentiment,” a smiling Obama said in one of several lighthearted references to his re-election this month to a second term.
Cobbler, the newly designated national turkey, and his alternate, Gobbler, received a reprieve.
“The American people have spoken, and these birds are moving forward!” Obama said in a reference to his campaign slogan of “Forward.”
Obama noted that Cobbler and Gobbler were selected by the American people, who cast their votes for the national Thanksgiving turkey on the White House Facebook page.
“Once again, Nate Silver completely nailed it,” Obama said, referring to the New York Times blogger who correctly predicted the president’s decisive victory in the Electoral College.
Accompanied by daughters Sasha and Malia, Obama waved his hand over Cobbler in a vaguely religious “dispensation,” then laughed as the bird gobbled loudly. Obama and Sasha petted the turkey. Malia did not.
“Congratulations, Cobbler. You’re going to have a great life,” Obama said.
The 19-week-old, 40-pound turkeys are from Rockingham County, Va. They will live at George Washington’s Mount Vernon estate, along with last year’s birds, Liberty and Peace.
Thanks to the American people, “the only cobbler anyone’s eating this Thanksgiving will come with a side of ice cream,” Obama said.
On a more serious note, Obama asked Americans to remember those in the Northeast who lost their homes, possessions and loved ones to Superstorm Sandy. Obama, who toured New York and New Jersey after the storm, said he has seen much destruction, “but I have yet to find a broken spirit.”
Later the Obamas and the president’s mother-in-law, Marian Robinson, went to the Capital Area Food Bank where they distributed sweet potatoes, carrots and other vegetables to those in need, including a group of children wearing bright yellow vests identifying them as part of the ECS youth program. Michelle Obama’s brother, Craig Robinson, who coaches the Oregon State University men’s basketball team, joined them, along with several team members.
The tradition of pardoning a Thanksgiving turkey at the White House started with President John F. Kennedy in 1963.
Follow Matthew Daly on Twitter: https://twitter.com/MatthewDalyWDC
Rules for posting comments
Comments posted below are from readers. In no way do they represent the view of Oahu Publishing Inc. or this newspaper. This is a public forum.
Comments may be monitored for inappropriate content but the newspaper is under no obligation to do so. Comment posters are solely responsible under the Communications Decency Act for comments posted on this Web site. Oahu Publishing Inc. is not liable for messages from third parties.
IP and email addresses of persons who post are not treated as confidential records and will be disclosed in response to valid legal process.
Do not post:
- Potentially libelous statements or damaging innuendo.
- Obscene, explicit, or racist language.
- Copyrighted materials of any sort without the express permission of the copyright holder.
- Personal attacks, insults or threats.
- The use of another person's real name to disguise your identity.
- Comments unrelated to the story.
If you believe that a commenter has not followed these guidelines, please click the FLAG icon below the comment.