Our View: . . . As Obama defends ‘Big Bird’

Posted: October 10, 2012

As Mitt Romney was laying out a foreign policy framework Monday in Lexington, Team Obama was hard at work . . . defending “Big Bird.” Theirs is a campaign writ suddenly small.

In an effort to extract anything possible from the president’s lackluster performance in last Wednesday’s presidential debate, his campaign team seized upon PBS funding as a theme. A TV ad, hurriedly cobbled together this week, takes issue with a rather offhand statement made by Mr. Romney during the debate.

“I like PBS. I love Big Bird. Actually, I like you, too,” Mr. Romney said, turning to address moderator Jim Lehrer, host of PBS’s “NewsHour.”

“But I'm not going to keep on spending money on things to borrow money from China to pay for.”

Needless to say, if that’s the only thing Team Obama figures it can rebut, well . . .

Much as he did throughout the debate, Mr. Romney fired back promptly at the ad, saying, “These are tough times, with real serious issues. So you have to scratch your head when the president spends the last week talking about Big Bird. I actually think we have to have a president who talks about saving the American people.”

In truth, Sesame Street, on which “Big Bird” resides, is a multimillion-dollar enterprise capable, says Sen. Jim DeMint, R-S.C., of “thriving in the private market.” Gary Knell, Sesame Street Workshop’s CEO, cleared nearly a million bucks — $956,513 — in compensation four years ago, notes columnist Michelle Malkin.

We’re not denying Mr. Knell his large salary, but we do question the extent to which the American taxpayer should be subsidizing his and other such lucrative enterprises.

Especially when Washington is borrowing more than 40 cents of every buck it spends and is $16 trillion in debt.