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Obama Turkey Pardon

November 23, 2011 by staff 

Obama Turkey Pardon, President Obama follows a venerable tradition today when he pardons a pair of Thanksgiving turkeys.

From the White House website: Each Thanksgiving, the President “pardons” a hand-selected turkey, sparing the bird from someone’s dinner table and ensuring the rest of its days are spent roaming on a farm, doing whatever it is turkeys love to do. Twenty-two turkeys have been pardoned, and today, President Obama will pardon one more.

You’re probably wondering: Where did this very serious business of the Presidential turkey pardon come from anyway?

Americans have been sending the President turkeys for the holidays since at least the 19th century. Beginning in 1873 during Grant’s presidency, a Rhode Island man named Horace Vose was responsible for “selecting with the utmost care” the “noblest gobbler in all that little state” for the President’s Thanksgiving dinner, a tradition he carried out for more than 25 years according to The New York Times. In 1947, the National Turkey Federation took on the role of official turkey supplier to the President, delivering a 47-pound bird in time for the Christmas holiday.

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