Have you heard?  Big Bird is now in the national POLITICAL spotlight!  And I know how he feels.  First, check out the report by Peter Nicholas from the Wall Street Journal and then keep reading for my personal experience.

By Peter Nicholas

The ad starring Big Bird, above.

Big Bird, it seems, isn’t thrilled about his cameo in the presidential race.

The folks at Sesame Street are asking the Obama campaign to pull down a TV ad released Tuesday that mocks Mitt Romney for vowing to yank the subsidy to PBS.

At the presidential debate in Denver last week, Mr. Romney said he would end the subsidy in view of the nation’s fiscal troubles.

“I love Big Bird,” the Republican challenger said “… But I’m not going to keep on spending money on things to borrow money from China to pay for.”

Up went an ad by team Obama called “Big Bird’’ that suggests Mr. Romney is targeting children’s programming rather than legitimate threats to people’s economic interests.

The ad shows images of Bernie Madoff and others implicated in various financial and corporate scandals. A narrator then intones: “And the evil genius who towered over them?”

A silhouette of Big Bird flashes on screen.

“Mitt Romney knows it’s not Wall Street you have to worry about, it’s Sesame Street,” the narrator said.

The ad is airing on national cable and broadcast TV, in time slots devoted to comedy shows, the Obama campaign said.

Sesame Street isn’t amused. Sesame Workshop, a nonprofit educational organization that produces and owns the show, issued a statement Tuesday saying “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.”

I know exactly how Sesame Street feels.  During the last U.S. Senate campaign, Nevada Senator Harry Reid used a quick video clip of me doing a newscast in one of his TV ads.  It didn’t matter what I said, simply the fact my face showed up on a Harry Reid campaign ad was enough to incite Republican viewers.  I personally, and my station, received hundreds of emails blasting me for “endorsing” Senator Reid.  I never gave permission for my image to be used.  I wasn’t even notified about the ad until after it started airing and my inbox blew up with angry viewers.  I’ve spend 19 years building a reputation in my community as being fair and objective.  One ad threatened that.  Big Bird, I know how you feel buddy.  But so you know, when I called the Reid campaign headquarters and asked them to stop running the ad… they denied my request.  Good luck to you!

About Wendy D

I was born in San Francisco and ended up marrying a rancher in Reno, Nevada. I have a big city job anchoring the 5 o’clock news but come home to the country where my husband’s family has ranched for 5 generations.

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