Obama Serves Thanksgiving Dinner To Homeless, Pardons Turkeys

Obama Serves Thanksgiving Dinner To Homeless
President Barack Obama pardons the National Thanksgiving Turkey Abe during the 68th annual ceremony in the Rose Garden at the White House in Washington, D.C. on November 25, 2015. Obama pardoned two turkeys, Abe and Honest during the annual Thanksgiving tradition. Obama was joined by National Turkey Federation Chairman Jihad Douglas (C) and Joe Hedden of foster farms. Photo by Kevin Dietsch/UPI

WASHINGTON, Nov. 26 (UPI) — President Barack Obama gave pardons to two turkeys in the White House Rose Garden, and later served Thanksgiving dinners to veterans and the homeless at a Washington shelter.

Beginning the weekend’s Thanksgiving holiday traditions, Obama and his family visited the Friendship Place Homeless Center Wednesday and joined the serving line; Obama dispensed turkey and gravy, first lady Michelle Obama served vegetables and daughters Sasha and Malia offered mashed potatoes, stuffing and cranberries to a line of diners at the center, which received a $3.1 million grant earlier this year from the Department of Veterans Affairs.

Earlier, Obama participated in the pardon of a turkey, a tradition which officially dates to the George H.W. Bush administration, although Abraham Lincoln spared a turkey from becoming the White house dinner, Ulysses S. Grant annually received a turkey from a friend as a gift during his White House years and posing with a turkey on Thanksgiving dates to at least the Truman administration. Obama’s formal pardon of two turkeys this year, named Honest and Abe, came with wisecracks and ironic comment.

“I know some folks think this tradition is a little silly. I do not disagree,” Obama said, adding Abe would be designated TOTUS — Turkey of the United States — and Honest would be held in an “undisclosed location” and would be prepared to fill in if “Abe can’t fulfill his duties to walk around and gobble all day.”

Obama also said he welcomed the holiday of Thanksgiving, adding, “The fact is, is that we live in the greatest country on Earth and we are blessed in so many ways.”


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here