White House Recap November 19-25, 2011: The Obama Presidency’s Weekly Recap — Thankgiving at the White House & Turkey Pardon

WHITE HOUSE RECAP

WHITE HOUSE RECAP: NOVEMBER 19-25, 2011

West Wing Week

The President wrapped up an 8 day tour in the Asia Pacific region, signed legislation to help our veterans find jobs, urged Congress to cut payroll taxes, and pardoned two turkeys. That’s November 18th to November 24th or “Your Best You.”

West Wing Week

West Wing Week: 11/24/11 or “Your Best You”

Source: WH, 11-24-11

This week, the President wrapped up an 8 day tour demonstrating American leadership and opening up economic opportunity for America in the Asia Pacific region. Upon his return he signed legislation to help our veterans find jobs, traveled to New Hampshire to urge Congress to cut payroll taxes for workers and small businesses, and pardoned two turkeys. That’s November 18th to November 24th or “Your Best You.”

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Full Text November 24, 2011: President Barack Obama’s Weekly Address on Thanksgiving & Being Thankful for the Military Serving Overseas

POLITICAL SPEECHES & DOCUMENTS

OBAMA PRESIDENCY & THE 112TH CONGRESS:

Weekly Address

President Obama wishes the American people a happy Thanksgiving — and gives a special thanks to the brave men and women serving overseas and those giving back to their communities during the holidays.

President Obama tapes the Weekly Address
President Obama tapes the Weekly Address, White House Photo, Lawrence Jackson, 11/23/11

Weekly Address: On Thanksgiving, Grateful for the Men and Women Who Defend Our Country

Source: WH, 11-24-11

President Obama wishes the American people a happy Thanksgiving — and gives a special thanks to the brave men and women serving overseas and those giving back to their communities during the holidays.

Transcript | Download mp4 | Download mp3

POLITICAL QUOTES & SPEECHES

WEEKLY ADDRESS: On Thanksgiving, Grateful for the Men and Women Who Defend Our Country

WASHINGTON—In this week’s address, President Obama wished the American people a happy Thanksgiving, giving a special thanks to the brave men and women serving overseas and those giving back at shelters and soup kitchens in their communities during the holidays.  Those who celebrated the first Thanksgiving persevered by drawing strength from each other, and today we once again come together in that spirit of unity to overcome our challenges, remaining thankful for our freedom and the blessings of family, community, and country.

The audio of the address and video of the address will be available online at www.whitehouse.gov at 6:00 a.m. ET, Thursday, November 24, 2011.

Remarks of President Barack Obama
Weekly Address
Thursday, November 24, 2011
The White House

From my family to yours, I’d like to wish you a happy Thanksgiving. Like millions of Americans, Michelle, Malia, Sasha and I will spend the day eating great food, watching a little football, and reflecting on how truly lucky we truly are.

As Americans, each of us has our own list of things and people to be thankful for.  But there are some blessings we all share.

We’re especially grateful for the men and women who defend our country overseas. To all the service members eating Thanksgiving dinner far from your families: the American people are thinking of you today.  And when you come home, we intend to make sure that we serve you as well as you’re serving America.

We’re also grateful for the Americans who are taking time out of their holiday to serve in soup kitchens and shelters, making sure their neighbors have a hot meal and a place to stay. This sense of mutual responsibility – the idea that I am my brother’s keeper; that I am my sister’s keeper – has always been a part of what makes our country special. And it’s one of the reasons the Thanksgiving tradition has endured.

The very first Thanksgiving was a celebration of community during a time of great hardship, and we have followed that example ever since. Even when the fate of our union was far from certain – during a Civil War, two World Wars, a Great Depression – Americans drew strength from each other. They had faith that tomorrow would be better than today.

We’re grateful that they did. As we gather around the table, we pause to remember the pilgrims, pioneers, and patriots who helped make this country what it is. They faced impossible odds, and yet somehow, they persevered. Today, it’s our turn.

I know that for many of you, this Thanksgiving is more difficult than most. But no matter how tough things are right now, we still give thanks for that most American of blessings, the chance to determine our own destiny. The problems we face didn’t develop overnight, and we won’t solve them overnight. But we will solve them. All it takes is for each of us to do our part.

With all the partisanship and gridlock here in Washington, it’s easy to wonder if such unity is really possible. But think about what’s happening at this very moment: Americans from all walks of life are coming together as one people, grateful for the blessings of family, community, and country.

If we keep that spirit alive, if we support each other, and look out for each other, and remember that we’re all in this together, then I know that we too will overcome the challenges of our time.

So today, I’m thankful to serve as your President and Commander-and-Chief. I’m thankful that my daughters get to grow up in this great country of ours. And I’m thankful for the chance to do my part, as together, we make tomorrow better than today.

Thanks, and have a wonderful Thanksgiving.

Full Text November 23, 2011: President Barack Obama Pardons Thanksgiving Turkeys Peace & Liberty

POLITICAL SPEECHES & DOCUMENTS

OBAMA PRESIDENCY & THE 112TH CONGRESS:

Happy Thanksgiving!

President Obama Pardons Peace & Liberty (the Turkeys)

Source: WH, 11-23-11
President Obama Pardons Liberty

President Barack Obama, with daughters, Malia and Sasha, pardons ‘Liberty’, the National Thanksgiving Turkey, in a ceremony on the North Portico of the White House, Nov. 23, 2011. At left is National Turkey Federation Chairman Richard Huisinga. (Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy)

As promised, this morning, President Obama pardoned two more turkeys — Liberty and Peace. The ceremony was held on the North Portico of the White House, and the president received a bit of help of his daughters, Sasha and Malia.

This year’s turkeys are both 19-weeks old and weigh 45 pounds. They were raised by a group of students from Willmar High School in Minnesota.

To kick off the pardon, President Obama said:

Tomorrow is one of the best days of the year to be an American. It’s a day to count our blessings, spend time with the ones we love, and enjoy some good food and some great company. But it’s also one of the worst days of the year to be a turkey. They don’t have it so good.

The rare exception, of course, are the two birds who’ve joined me today. Now, is Peace here, or just Liberty? Just Liberty is here, but Peace is back here somewhere. 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. We can’t wait to pardon these turkeys. Literally. Otherwise they’d end up next to the mashed potatoes and stuffing.

He also remarked on the special training provided to these birds for their big moment:

Now, I’m told that in order to prepare Liberty and Peace for their big day, the students exposed them to loud noises and flash bulbs so that they’d be ready to face the White House press corps. This is actually true. They also received the most important part of their media training, which involves learning how to gobble without really saying anything.

So Liberty is ready for his turn in the spotlight. And after he finishes a round of cable hits and a few Sunday shows, he’s going to retire to a life of leisure at Mount Vernon — the same place where George Washington spent his golden years.

Want to know more about turkey pardons? The White House Turkey Pardon definitive history.

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