Barack Obama (b. 1961) is an American politician who served as the 44th President of the United States from 2009 to 2017, and was the first African-American elected to the position. He had previously served as a United States Senator from Illinois between 2005 and 2008, and as a member of the Illinois Senate from the 13th district between 1997 and 2004.
Elmo, Rosita, a Muppet number 1 and the letters U, S and A recorded special videos for the We Are One concert event celebrating Obama's inauguration as President in January 2009. Count von Count appeared in a video produced for Obama's second inauguration in January 2013.
On April 12, 2009, President Obama hosted the annual White House Easter Egg Roll on the lawn of The White House. The president treated the crowd to a reading of Maurice Sendak's Where the Wild Things Are; while other readers included first lady Michelle Obama and actors James Cromwell and Daniel Stern. Walk-around versions of Elmo and Abby Cadabby from Sesame Street, and Sid from Sid the Science Kid were in attendance at the event along with other PBS Kids characters.
President Obama recorded a video message for the 2009 Sesame Workshop Benefit Gala congratulating and thanking Sesame Workshop for their 40 years of educating America's youth.
PBS used this to open their coverage during the TV Critics' Press Tour on August 1, 2009.
The President again acknowledged Sesame Street’s 40th Anniversary in a message recorded for A Capitol Fourth.
President Obama appeared on the final broadcast of CNN's Larry King Live in a videotaped tribute to the career of host Larry King. The President noted that King has interviewed "everyone from presidents to generals, to Kermit the Frog to Joe from Tacoma."
Characters from the Muppets and Sesame Street — including Kermit the Frog, Miss Piggy, Abby Cadabby and Elmo — have appeared with Obama and his family at the White House for the annual Easter Egg Roll and Christmas Tree Lighting ceremonies.
- In a 2008 appearance on Capitol Hill, sponsored by the Association of Zoos & Aquariums, Kermit the Frog spoke of his future career in politics by referencing Obama's 2008 campaign slogan "Change You Can Believe In". Kermit stated, "I'd probably hop for office before I'd run. Ha ha! I don't know... Perhaps. I could, y'know, what am I good at? Should I start small, like a mayor, move up the chain? Sure, sure. Why not? Change you can believe in."
- In a 2008 appearance on 97.1 Free FM's "Frosty, Heidi and Frank Show"; Kermit and Fozzie talked about the presidential campaign. Kermit stated that "[Obama]'s more like a frog. You see... if I had ears, don't you think I'd look a little like him?"; while Fozzie remarked that he served as the opening act for Obama on the campaign trail.
- In a June 2008 appearance on The Colbert Report, Cookie Monster argued that although he does not wear a cookie lapel pin, he still supports cookies (a reference to then-current media attention on Obama's refusal to wear an American flag lapel pin).
- During a November 2008 appearance on NBC's Today, Statler and Waldorf presented their picks for Obama's cabinet -- including Judge Judy (Attorney General), the Deal or No Deal girls (Secretary of Treasury), Martha Stewart (Secretary of the Interior), Fozzie Bear (Secretary of the Inferior), and the hosts of The View.
- In the closing tag of The Muppets episode "Got Silk", Pepe the King Prawn does an impression of Obama.
- "Barack Obama: Former Babysitter and 'Sesame Street' Watcher". Joan Ganz Cooney's Blog, wowOwow.com. July 10, 2008.
- "Observing History Again: A Student's Trip to the Inauguration", by Johora Ramotar, The Oracle, January 22, 2013.
- Sesameworkshop.org President Obama: "The world is a better place" with Sesame Street
- Puppet Tears, ep 065 — Debra Spinney, "Mrs. Big Bird" + life as a Sesame Street ambassador (00:48:30)
- "Kermit Lobbies Congress". The Hill's Congress Blog, TheHill.com. March 13, 2008."
- "Kermit & Fozzie on 97.1FM Los Angeles interview"