What the turkey pardon says about Trump's transition

CNN's Jim Acosta discusses President Donald Trump's surprise briefing after participating in the annual White House Thanksgiving turkey pardoning event.

Posted: Nov 25, 2020 5:31 PM
Updated: Nov 25, 2020 5:31 PM

President Donald Trump made two rare post-Election Day appearances in front of TV cameras today -- in both of which he touted stock market gains that have little to do with his leadership.

Trump then appeared alongside the first lady to issue an all-important turkey pardon.

It's a presidential tradition full of showmanship, largely devoid of substance, with Trump center stage. It seems to be one of his favorite traditions, and a potential indicator of what's to come.

Consider this observation from Matt Flegenheimer and Maggie Haberman in The New York Times:

"In some ways, Mr. Trump had seemed to imagine his Washington life more closely resembling a rolling turkey pardon — the pomp and splendor, yes, but also a world largely amenable to his boss-man bearing and binary whims: This bird is spared. Those birds are not. He'd have his people call the turkey people and hammer out the fine print later. But through it all, his word would be final."

There are already signs we'll likely see more ceremonies centered on pomp and circumstance than other political events over the next 57 days. We have seen Trump on camera only a handful of times since his election loss. No one is holding their breath for a traditional White House confab between outgoing Trump and President-elect Joe Biden, or even a normal concession speech.

Yet Trump has marched ahead with lighter ceremonial traditions. On Monday, the White House Christmas Tree arrived. Despite the pandemic, the outgoing administration is still planning to host many of this year's public and private White House holiday events -- albeit in a smaller fashion, report CNN's Maegan Vazquez and Betsy Klein. But it's hard to argue that since Election Day, Trump has spent much of his time tweeting, golfing and firing people.

The President will likely announce his real-world pardons soon: Previous presidents announced non-turkey pardons and clemencies in the final days of their administrations.

The Point: The Trump administration's remaining days will likely look more like the turkey pardon than a normal day at work.

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 1462456

Reported Deaths: 20308
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion2005922494
Lake992001456
Allen903391005
Hamilton70705539
St. Joseph63078746
Elkhart48098622
Vanderburgh46217523
Tippecanoe42115330
Johnson37119516
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Porter33900460
Madison28036530
Clark25186321
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Monroe22201243
Howard21344372
Delaware20937363
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Kosciusko17513199
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Warrick16060212
Wayne15757296
Floyd15399252
Grant14898293
Morgan13934230
Boone13172136
Noble11421140
Dearborn11355112
Henry11312201
Shelby11231150
Marshall11041166
Dubois10782152
Jackson10174104
DeKalb9944128
Cass9942142
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Gibson9131125
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Knox8762124
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Switzerland189414
Martin181921
Warren169520
Union163619
Ohio119516
Unassigned0742

Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 2403645

Reported Deaths: 30922
CountyCasesDeaths
Franklin2596932036
Cuyahoga2572672998
Hamilton1666711699
Montgomery1103831586
Summit1066861382
Lucas895171149
Butler78647924
Stark747301383
Lorain62885783
Warren49934468
Mahoning49735909
Lake46850586
Clermont43541428
Delaware38876210
Trumbull38576748
Medina37611416
Licking36901401
Fairfield33848331
Greene32124416
Portage31381356
Clark30277440
Richland28251420
Wood27660289
Allen24372392
Miami22806389
Muskingum22298244
Columbiana22095399
Wayne21275354
Tuscarawas18847423
Erie18041221
Ashtabula17932338
Marion17503231
Scioto16553203
Ross16163249
Pickaway15536173
Hancock15251227
Geauga15244221
Lawrence13847186
Huron13399182
Union1329683
Belmont13255247
Jefferson12864257
Sandusky12770197
Athens11949106
Knox11511195
Seneca11454200
Ashland10795174
Darke10673196
Washington10564168
Auglaize10152141
Crawford9854175
Shelby9699155
Brown9400140
Fulton9235148
Guernsey9109115
Defiance9057134
Highland9035143
Logan8955141
Clinton8719121
Mercer8640111
Madison8568104
Preble8002160
Williams7848135
Putnam7731135
Ottawa7629120
Champaign7556112
Jackson7383114
Perry714598
Coshocton7043136
Morrow694580
Fayette662287
Hardin6219125
Pike617086
Gallia594989
Adams5779124
Van Wert5779120
Henry565592
Hocking5521103
Carroll4828100
Wyandot482289
Holmes4747161
Paulding401163
Meigs375071
Monroe299368
Noble279851
Harrison279461
Morgan276848
Vinton239845
Unassigned08
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