Obama pardons lucky turkeys ahead of Thanksgiving

Obama pardons lucky turkeys ahead of Thanksgiving

WASHINGTON - Doğan News Agency (DHA)
Obama pardons lucky turkeys ahead of Thanksgiving

President Barack Obama's daughter Malia (2nd-L) pets the National Thanksgiving Turkey in a ceremony at the North Portico of the White House in Washington, DC, on Nov 23. AFP Photo

U.S. President Barack Obama pardoned two turkeys yesterday as part of the country’s traditional Thanksgiving celebrations. 

Following a lighthearted speech, Obama pardoned two turkeys, named Peace and Liberty, which were raised by high-school students.

"Some of you may know," Obama told the cheerful crowd, "that recently I've been taking a series of actions that don't require congressional approval. Well, here's another one."

The president further joked about the pre-ceremonial training the turkeys received to "be ready to face the White House press court."

"They also received the most important part of their media training which involves how to gobble without really saying anything," Obama told the audience, amid laughter and chuckles.

Obama walked up to Liberty at the end of his speech and mimicked a grandiose hand gesture to pardon the lucky birds.

Every year during Thanksgiving celebrations, the U.S. president symbolically pardons a turkey, sending it to the Mount Vernon estate, where George Washington spent his later years. 

The lucky bird to receive the presidential pardon is saved from becoming a Thanksgiving meal