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President and First Lady Issue Statement on Kwanzaa

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Barack and Michelle Obama
Barack and Michelle Obama
Photo Credit: Getty Images

As the holidays continue and the New Year approaches, many Americans are pausing to observe Kwanzaa. The president and First Lady released a statement sending their warm wishes to those celebrating the five-day event.

"Michelle and I send our warmest wishes to all those celebrating Kwanzaa this holiday season," read the statement. "We celebrate Kwanzaa at a time when many African Americans and all Americans reflect on our many blessings and memories over the past year and our aspirations for the year to come. And when even there is much to be thankful for, we know that where are still too many Americans going through enormous challenges and trying to make ends meet. But we also know that in the spirit of unity, or Umoja, we can overcome those challenges together."

As many Americans continue their holiday season without interruption, the president cut his Hawaiian vacation short and returned to Washington, D.C. the day after Christmas. He's currently working with a number other officials to handle the looming fiscal cliff. Mrs. Obama and the kids will remain in Hawaii for the duration of their holiday.

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