Barack pardons 'luckiest turkey on earth' in curious Thanksgiving custom

On Wednesday, President Barack Obama took a break from the economic crisis and securing world peace to focus his mind on a more pressing issue –  saving a 45-pound turkey named Liberty.

Every Thanksgiving the US premier 'pardons' one special turkey. The act of clemency saves the bird from its fate as the centre piece of a festive dinner.

Clearly enjoying being able to wield his altruistic powers, the president was in the holiday spirit as he laughed and joked alongside his daughters, Sasha and Malia.



He called Liberty the "luckiest bird on the face of the earth" and added that, without his presidential powers, the bird would "end up next to the mashed potatoes and stuffing".

After the light-hearted ceremony, the first family headed to Capital Area Food Bank to hand out food to the needy.

Barack, wife Michelle and their daughters were attentive as they chatted with the centre’s clients.

With the president having now officially declared Holiday Season in America, celebrities have also turned their minds to Thanksgiving.

Lady Gaga planned to return her old school to celebrate with current pupils. Meanwhile, Kim Kardashian joined Hollywood legend Kirk Douglas at a Los Angeles soup kitchen to serve the homeless.