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Biden says pardoned turkeys will be ‘boosted’, not ‘watered’

WASHINGTON (AP) – President Joe Biden pardoned two Thanksgiving turkeys on Friday, saying the male white birds were selected based on their “temperament, appearance and, I guess, vaccination status.”

“Instead of getting brushed off, these two turkeys are boosted today,” Biden joked.

Biden was in a jovial mood as he showed up to White House staff and their families in the rose garden to forgive the Indiana turkeys, who gleefully gobbled up throughout the event. And while they were given a reprieve from the plight suffered by millions of turkeys on Thanksgiving Day, Biden said their names – Peanut Butter and Jelly – reminded him of the sandwich he often enjoys for lunch.

The pardon comes as Biden’s agenda has seen new signs of life, with the President signing his $ 1 trillion infrastructure bill on Monday and the House passing an even larger companion bill – the Bill. $ 2 trillion social services and climate change law – Friday. This bill will have to go through the Senate 50-50 before it lands on Biden’s desk.

Biden scoffed at his recent speeches on the infrastructure bill on Friday, saying that “the turkey is infrastructure” and that “the peanut butter and jelly will help rebuild the butter ball as it goes. as we go, “a reference to the” Build Back Better “slogan.

“I’ve said it before, all Americans want the same thing: you want to be able to look the turkey in the eye and tell them it’s going to be okay,” he joked.

And he said the two birds were now “Indiana’s mighty pair” – with an apology to Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg and her husband, Chasten, who are from Indiana.

This year’s turkeys have spent a busy few days in Washington, appearing to the media alongside members of the Indiana congressional delegation before retiring to a suite at the luxurious Willard Hotel.

They will also have a new comfortable home. Duly pardoned, the turkeys are now heading to Purdue University’s Animal Science Research and Education Center, where they will spend the rest of their days in an enclosed setting with access to a shady grassy area, according to Purdue.

Turkey’s forgiveness has traditionally been an opportunity for presidents to crack jokes – often at their own expense – and usher in the holiday season.

In 2019, President Donald Trump joked about his impeachment inquiry, telling attendees that the turkeys “had already received subpoenas from Adam Schiff’s basement,” a reference to the congressman who headed investigation. And President Barack Obama in 2014 criticized taking action “within my legal authority” to pardon turkeys, a blow to Republicans who had criticized him for signing a series of executive orders.

Presidents have pardoned turkeys since Abraham Lincoln, but President George HW Bush made forgiveness the American tradition it is today by sparing a 50-pound bird in 1989.

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