'Sesame Street' makers want out of political campaign
Published Tuesday, October 9, 2012 10:55AM EDT
Last Updated Tuesday, October 9, 2012 4:47PM EDT
The makers of “Sesame Street” are ready to give presidential candidates Barack Obama and Mitt Romney a time-out, asking both men to refrain from dragging their characters into the U.S. presidential election campaign.
Sesame Workshop, the non-profit organization behind the long-running kids show, requested on Tuesday that their characters and trademarks be removed from campaign material.
“Sesame Workshop is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization and we do not endorse candidates or participate in political campaigns,” the group said in a statement.
“We have approved no campaign ads, and, as is our general practice, have requested that both campaigns remove Sesame Street characters and trademarks from their campaign materials.
The request comes after U.S. President Barack Obama used Big Bird in his latest campaign ad, a comical jab at Romney’s attention to cutting funding to PBS – and lack of attention to cracking down on the banking industry.
“Bernie Madoff. Ken Lay. Dennis Kozlowski. Criminals, gluttons of greed,” the commercial begins, showing images of some of the country’s most notorious white-collar criminals.
“And the evil genius towering over them…”
The commercial then shows a reflection of Big Bird in a tall glass skyscraper, and Romney speaking the Sesame Street character’s name at various campaign stops.
Big Bird flapped into the U.S. presidential campaign after Romney mentioned him during last week’s televised debate. Romney said that while he loved Big Bird, he would cut funding to PBS should he be elected president.
In the commercial, Obama’s campaign suggests Romney is more focused on attacking PBS – which airs “Sesame Street” – than cleaning up white-collar criminals.
“Big. Yellow. A menace to our economy. Mitt Romney knows it’s not Wall Street you have to worry about, it’s ‘Sesame Street,’” the narrator continues.
The Republican National Committee struck back at Obama on Tuesday, claiming he was focusing on the Big Bird comment because he didn’t have any big ideas to present.