Big Bird pulled into politics (again)

Evan Agostini/AP
Romney, Obama, Reid, Boehner, whatever. You know who's really dominating political talk today? Big Bird.

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney professed his love of the giant yellow guy during last night's debate, after saying he'd cut federal funding from PBS as part of his plan to tackle the deficit. Today, President Obama joked at a Denver rally that "Thank goodness someone is finally getting tough on Big Bird."

This isn't the first time Big Bird has been pulled into the political fray. Why, it was just last month when Reps. Brian Bilbray, R-Calif, and Ed Markey, D-Mass., at an event decrying automatic cuts to the National Institutes of Health, disagreed over whether to cook Big Bird's goose (Can a bird have a goose? Anyway....).

If the sequester actually happens, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, which supports PBS, would face an 8.2 percent cut to its federally budgeted $445 million. That means about $36 million in cuts, according to the latest White House Office of Management and Budget report. And while Sesame Street receives much of its money from corporate sponsors rather than from PBS, the show "is dependent on PBS to distribute our commercial-free educational programming to all children in the United States," reads a Sesame Workshop statement released today:
At a time when improvements in school readiness are recognized as being much needed for a significant number of America's preschoolers, PBS's ability to connect Big Bird and Friends to these children is essential.  We highly value that connection.  Sesame Workshop is a nonpartisan, nonprofit, educational organization. We do not comment on political campaigns, but we're happy we can all agree that everyone likes Big Bird.
So, how does Big Bird feel about all this talk? He tweeted via the @sesamestreet account: "My bed time is usually 7:45, but I was really tired yesterday and fell asleep at 7! Did I miss anything last night?"
Stay up-to-date with federal news alerts and analysis — Sign up for GovExec's email newsletters.
FROM OUR SPONSORS
JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Close [ x ] More from GovExec
 
 

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from GovExec.com.
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Going Agile:Revolutionizing Federal Digital Services Delivery

    Here’s one indication that times have changed: Harriet Tubman is going to be the next face of the twenty dollar bill. Another sign of change? The way in which the federal government arrived at that decision.

    Download
  • Cyber Risk Report: Cybercrime Trends from 2016

    In our first half 2016 cyber trends report, SurfWatch Labs threat intelligence analysts noted one key theme – the interconnected nature of cybercrime – and the second half of the year saw organizations continuing to struggle with that reality. The number of potential cyber threats, the pool of already compromised information, and the ease of finding increasingly sophisticated cybercriminal tools continued to snowball throughout the year.

    Download
  • Featured Content from RSA Conference: Dissed by NIST

    Learn more about the latest draft of the U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology guidance document on authentication and lifecycle management.

    Download
  • GBC Issue Brief: The Future of 9-1-1

    A Look Into the Next Generation of Emergency Services

    Download
  • GBC Survey Report: Securing the Perimeters

    A candid survey on cybersecurity in state and local governments

    Download
  • The New IP: Moving Government Agencies Toward the Network of The Future

    Federal IT managers are looking to modernize legacy network infrastructures that are taxed by growing demands from mobile devices, video, vast amounts of data, and more. This issue brief discusses the federal government network landscape, as well as market, financial force drivers for network modernization.

    Download
  • eBook: State & Local Cybersecurity

    CenturyLink is committed to helping state and local governments meet their cybersecurity challenges. Towards that end, CenturyLink commissioned a study from the Government Business Council that looked at the perceptions, attitudes and experiences of state and local leaders around the cybersecurity issue. The results were surprising in a number of ways. Learn more about their findings and the ways in which state and local governments can combat cybersecurity threats with this eBook.

    Download

When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.