The shadow of impeachment darkened even the lighthearted turkey pardon on Tuesday, when President Donald Trump used his speech to make fun of the top Democratic leading the inquiry, Adam Schiff.
Presidents have been pardoning turkeys as far back as Abraham Lincoln’s administration, and it’s traditionally a family affair, with young relatives of the sitting president taking part and the president typically giving a humorous speech.
Trump certainly had jokes, but the opposing party may not have found them so funny. After detailing how the turkeys named “Bread” and “Butter” had been raised by farmer Wellie Jackson in North Carolina, Trump proceeded to crack a joke about how Rep. Adam Schiff was eyeing to have them testify in front of the House Intelligence Committee.
“Thankfully, Bread and Butter have been specially raised by the Jacksons to remain calm under any condition, which will be very important because they’ve already received subpoenas to appear in Adam Schiff’s basement on Thursday. It’s true, hundreds of people have,” Trump said.
“But Bread and Butter, I thought should I note that unlike previous witnesses, you and I have actually met,” Trump continued, referencing how some of the officials called to testify in the impeachment hearings didn’t witness certain events firsthand.
Trump ended the ceremony by pardoning the bird named Butter. Bread, the alternate turkey, will also get to spend the rest of its life at Gobbler’s Rest at Virginia Tech University.