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Watch: Even the Sign Language Interpreter Looks Shocked at Biden's Confusing Turkey Comment

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On Monday, President Joe Biden continued the White House tradition of issuing presidential turkey pardons ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday.

It’s usually a lighthearted moment that Americans watch on the nightly news.

However, this year’s ceremony on the South Lawn of the White House got weird.

In fact, one comment from our gaffe-prone president’s turkey pardoning was so strange that the sign language interpreter who appeared next to Biden on the White House video feed seemed momentarily but genuinely shocked.

After pardoning turkeys “Chocolate” and “Chip,” Biden turned to Ronnie Parker of Circle S Ranch in Monroe, North Carolina, who raised the birds, according to WCNC-TV.

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“How many turkeys you got down there — you raising?” the president asked.

“Circle S Ranch raises about nine and a half million turkeys a year,” said Parker, chairman of the National Turkey Federation.

Biden, seemingly stunned by the high number, immediately made a comparison that those watching had a tough time deciphering — and his response left sign language interpreter Elsie Stecker with her mouth wide open.

“God love ya. Nine and a half million turkeys. I tell you what, that’s like some of the countries I’ve been to,” Biden responded.

After he made the comment, whose meaning nobody seemed able to comprehend, the president immediately turned to the turkey on the table.

“And the — anyway. You wanna talk?” he said to the bird.

Like Stecker, many on social media were dumbfounded.

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Some interpreted his comments as insulting to the countries he visited.

Giving creative credit where credit is due, Biden’s scriptwriters came up with at least one somewhat funny line to distract from what was otherwise an extremely awkward moment for many who were watching.

“First of all, the votes are in. They’ve been counted and verified. There’s no ballot stuffing. There’s no fowl play. The only red wave this season is going to be a German shepherd, Commander — knocks over the cranberry sauce on our table.,” the now 80-year-old president said.

What Biden didn’t mention, however, was the not-so-fun side of this year’s Thanksgiving, which is how much more the holiday dinner will cost this year. According to the American Farm Bureau Federation, Americans can expect to pay at least 20 percent more than they did last year.

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Ryan Ledendecker is a freelance journalist and writer. He began reporting news and writing commentary during the 2014 Ferguson riots. Prior to that, he worked as a web editor and columnist for an award-winning local newspaper.
Ryan Ledendecker is a freelance writer covering politics and breaking news. He previously worked as a columnist and web editor for an award-winning local newspaper. When he's not writing, he's honing his competitive BBQ skills. You can find him on Twitter, Facebook, and Truth Social.
St. Louis, Missouri
Languages Spoken
Topics of Expertise
Politics, Science & Technology