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Obama Kicks Off Thanksgiving With Two Turkey Pardons

Tracy Bloom |
November 23, 2011 | 1:07 p.m. PST

Executive Editor

Continuing his own Thanksgiving tradition, President Obama on Wednesday pardoned a pair of plump gobblers ahead of the holiday. Traditionally, the president only pardons one turkey.

Thanksgiving, Obama said, is "one of the best days of the year to be an American. But it’s also one of the worst days to be a turkey.”

The president, who was joined by his daughters Sasha and Malia, joked that he was now working on matters that did not require congressional approval.

"Some of you may know that recently I’ve been taking a series of executive actions that don’t require Congressional approval. Well, here’s another one,” he said, “we can’t wait to pardon these turkeys.”

This year, the lucky birds are named "Peace" and "Liberty."

Two other unnamed birds, however, were not so lucky. "Later today, Michelle, Malia and I will also be taking two unnamed turkeys, who weren’t so lucky, to a local food bank here in D.C. that helps those in need," President Obama said.

The annual presidential ritual has taken place for the past 64 years.





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