Sesame Workshop tried to defuse controversy after the ridiculous Big Bird ad from Team Obama after the first presidential debate, proclaiming “Sesame Workshop is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization and we do not endorse candidates or participate in political campaigns.” But a quick look at the campaign contributions of Joan Ganz Cooney, the group’s co-founder, offer a strong factual rebuttal.
In 2012, according to an Open Secrets search, Cooney has donated $30,800 [the maximum] to the DNC, $50,000 to Priorities USA Action (Obama’s super PAC), another $10,000 to the Nebraska Democratic Party, and $5,000 to Bob Kerrey’s attempt to reclaim his Senate seat in Nebraska. She also gave $2,000 to liberal Rep. Carolyn McCarthy (D-N.Y.) and $2,500 to John Douglass, who’s running against first-term Rep. Robert Hurt (R-Virginia).
In 2011, Cooney donated $30,800 [the maximum] to the DNC, $5,000 to Barack Obama, and $5,000 to liberal Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.). .
The website Newsmeat reports Cooney gave the DNC $30,400 in 2009 and $30,400 in 2010, as well as $9,100 to the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee in 2010. She gave the “Obama Victory Fund” $33,100 in 2008. She also donated $25,000 to the DNC in 2004. All these Cooney donations (not the complete list) add up to more than $250,000.
Cooney’s not the only Sesame Workshop executive whose name comes up on Open Secrets. Maura Harway, a vice president for finance at the Workshop, also donated $2,250 to Barack Obama in the last two years.
Newsmeat reports Harway donated $2,550 to the Obama Victory Fund in 2008 and $2,000 to John Kerry’s campaign in 2004. She especially liked Hillary Clinton, donating $4,350 to her 2008 presidential run and another $3,950 to “Friends of Hillary” (the Senate campaign fund) over the years.
Everyone knows PBS is for Democrats and the Democrats are for PBS. In case you're new to this spectacle, we remind you of the "Listgate" scandal of 1999, when The Boston Globe reported that Boston PBS superstation WGBH had been swapping direct-mail names and addresses with the DNC since 1994.