Sesame Street on Big Bird Political Ad: Take It Down

By Melanie Arter | October 9, 2012 | 12:41 PM EDT

FILE - Big Bird, of the children's television show Sesame Street, arrives at the Daytime Emmy Awards on in this Aug. 30, 2009 file photo, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Matt Sayles, File)

( – The Sesame Workshop apparently is calling on the campaign of President Barack Obama to take down an ad that uses the character “Big Bird” to criticize Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney.

“Sesame Workshop is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization and we do not endorse candidates or participate in political campaigns. We have approved no campaign ads, and as is our general practice, have requested that the ad be taken down,” the Sesame Workshop said on its website today.

While the statement does not name "Big Bird" or the Obama campaign, the only ad currently running with the Sesame Street character is one put out by the Obama campaign.

Sesame Workshop is the PBS-affiliated nonprofit educational organization behind the show Sesame Street.

The ad in question apparently was produced in response to Romney’s pledge during the first presidential debate last week to end taxpayer subsidies to the Public Broadcasting Service (PBS).

The ad names Bernie Madoff and Ken Lay as “criminals and gluttons of greed.” The narrator then says, “And the evil genius who towered over them,” showing an outline of Big Bird.

“One man has the guts to speak his name,” the narrator states. Then, Romney is shown on three separate occasions saying, “Big Bird.”

Cut to: Big Bird – “It’s me, Big Bird.”

“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 announcer says.

The ad then shows Romney during the presidential debate: “I’m going to stop the subsidies to PBS.”

“Mitt Romney, taking on our enemies no matter where they nest,” the narrator says in closing, and then the ad cuts to a picture of Big Bird sitting in his nest on “Sesame Street.”


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