Trump cracks impeachment jokes during turkey pardon, says Bread and Butter were subpoenaed

Trump cracks impeachment jokes during turkey pardon, says Bread and Butter were subpoenaed
© Greg Nash

President TrumpDonald John TrumpThe Hill's Morning Report - Sponsored by AdvaMed - House panel expected to approve impeachment articles Thursday Democrats worried by Jeremy Corbyn's UK rise amid anti-Semitism Warren, Buttigieg duke it out in sprint to 2020 MORE made light of the House impeachment inquiry Tuesday by joking that the two turkeys selected for the annual presidential pardon had been subpoenaed by House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam SchiffAdam Bennett SchiffDemocrats seek leverage for trial Pence's office denies Schiff request to declassify call with Ukrainian leader Comey, Schiff to be interviewed by Fox's Chris Wallace MORE (D-Calif.).

“Thankfully, Bread and Butter have been specially raised 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,” Trump said after emerging from the Oval Office with first lady Melania TrumpMelania TrumpThe Hill's Morning Report - Sponsored by AdvaMed - House panel expected to approve impeachment articles Thursday The Hill's 12:30 Report — Presented by UANI — Republicans grill DOJ inspector general on FBI handling of Russia probe The Hill's Morning Report - Sponsored by AdvaMed - An unusual day: Impeachment plus a trade deal MORE for a Rose Garden ceremony in a tradition that dates back to 1865.

“It seems the Democrats are accusing me of being too soft on turkey," he added. "But Bread and Butter, I should note that, unlike previous witnesses, you and I have actually met."

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Instead of receiving subpoenas, however, Bread and Butter are slated to spend the rest of their days gobbling alongside other pardoned turkeys at Gobblers Rest, part of Virginia Tech University's Department of Animal and Poultry Science.

The two turkeys came from a farm in Sampson County, N.C., and were named by the students at nearby Harrells Christian Academy. Bread and Butter were raised by Wellie Jackson, who attended the White House ceremony with his wife.

Before Tuesday's pardoning, the two birds enjoyed a luxurious stay at the Willard InterContinental Hotel in Washington, where they had a comfortable visit, according to hotel general manager Markus Platzer.

There is a long White House history of turkeys being granted clemency, but former President George H.W. Bush was the first to use the term "pardon."

"Let me assure you, and this fine tom turkey, that he will not end up on anyone's dinner table, not this guy," Bush said in 1989. "He's granted a presidential pardon as of right now — and allow him to live out his days on a children's farm not far from here."

Trump on Tuesday continued the tradition, allowing Bread and Butter to enjoy Thanksgiving in peace.

“I wish you a lot of luck," Trump said. "I hereby grant you a full and complete pardon."