Presenting the president with a live turkey every Thanksgiving dates all the way back to Harry Truman. But ever since George H. W. Bush’s first turkey day in 1989, part of that tradition has included issuing a presidential pardon for the bird being criminally delicious. Over the past 8 years President Obama has put his own spin on it — officially transforming it into the dad joke of presidential pardons.
Some of the turkeys saved during the Obama administration include Peace, Liberty, Honest, Abe, Cobbler, and Gobbler. Sadly, some of the dad jokes weren’t so lucky, and were immediately sentenced to death by his daughters. Last year Obama even thanked Sasha and Malia for putting up with it year after year, before confirming their struggle with the line, “Time flies, but turkeys don’t.” The girls liked this a lot more than his classic bit in 2014, where he tried to get them to pet the turkey. Will he reach peak dad mode and wear his favorite jeans this year? Tune into the White House’s website to find out.
Now that Obama is going cold turkey, there’s no telling what’s next for this ever evolving tradition. Maybe President-elect Donald Trump will try his hand at a few fowl jokes. Of course, with Trump, only one thing is certain: That bird better be yuge.