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05.22.143:36 PM ET

Muppets, Superheroes And The Politicians Who Love Them

Nancy Pelosi was following in the footsteps of many other political figures in being photographed with Cookie Monster on Thursday.

C  is for cookie and it’s also for curious choice in photo opportunities by a politician.  On Thursday, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi was photographed with Sesame Street’s Cookie Monster at an event to promote the USO. It was an interesting pairing. Pelosi has long been known on Capitol Hill for her ability to stay on message while the Cookie Monster is notorious for his total lack of impulse control once he has a cookie in front of him. Pelosi is one of many politicians who have given in to the temptation of being pictured alongside a cartoon character or Muppet. 

WASHINGTON, DC - MARCH 12:  U.S. first lady Michelle Obama (R) and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Martin Dempsey (L) welcome Kermit the Frog during a screening of Disney's "Muppets Most Wanted" at the Eisenhower Executive Office Building March 12, 2014 in Washington, DC. The movie's preview was for an audience of military children and families as part of the Joining Forces Initiative.  (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)
Win McNamee/Getty

In March, Kermit the Frog appeared with First Lady Michelle Obama at an event for military families at the White House. At the event, the movie "Muppets Most Wanted" was shown. Not concidentally, the event coincided with the promotional campaign around that film's release. During the visit, Kermit kissed the First Lady's hand, risking the potential jealousy of Miss Piggy.

Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld, center, flexes his muscles with Spiderman, left, and Captain American at the Pentagon, Thursday, April 28, 2005, as the Marvel Enterprises heroes took part in the Pentagon's "Take Your Daughters and Sons to Work Day."  (AP Photo/Heesoon Yim)
HEESOON YIM/AP

In 2005, then-Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld partnered with Marvel Comics to promote a new comic book produced for members of the Armed Forces. Rumsfeld flexed his muscles with Spiderman and Captain America in order announce that 1 million copies of the “Support Our Troops” comic book, featuring the New Avengers and the Fantastic Four, would be distributed to troops both in the United States and overseas. 

First lady Nancy Reagan glances towards ALF, an alien life form, during a Christmas party for Children of Washington's diplomatic corp at the White House Monday.
Dennis Cook/AP

At a White House Christmas party in 1987, Alf, the space alien from the planet Melmac and star of the self-titled NBC sitcom, palled around First Lady Nancy Reagan. Fortunately, as the Reagans only had dogs, there was no risk of a political incident being provoked by Alf's well-known propensity for eating cats.

NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 13:  New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg stands with Muppets Miss Piggy and Gonzo during a news conference on April 13, 2012 in New York City.  NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg and NYC and Co. announced today that the Muppets will act as New York City's official family ambassadors for the next year. The Muppets will will encourage family travel to New York City by highlighting the best ways for families to experience the city. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
Justin Sullivan/Getty

In 2012, then-Mayor Michael Bloomberg appeared with members of the Muppets in Times Square to announce that the creatures would be New York’s official family ambassadors. Although the Muppets did famously take Manhattan it was unclear, what, if any, experience they had in the outer boroughs.

Rep. Ed Markey (D-MA) joins Arthur the Aardvark character on Capitol Hill in Washington February 16, 2011, where congressmen gathered to discuss the House Appropriations Committee's formal proposal to end federal funding for public broadcasting.    REUTERS/Jason Reed (UNITED STATES  - Tags: POLITICS ENTERTAINMENT MEDIA) - RTR2IOPW
Jason Reed/Reuters

In 2011, then-Rep. Ed Markey (D-MA) appeared with Arthur the Aardvark, the star of the PBS show Arthur, to promote funding for public broadcasting. Markey, who is now a senator, proclaimed at the time, “We can’t leave Arthur and his pals in the lurch.” In making his stand, Markey showed a certain level of courage. There is an inherent risk of embarassment anytime someone with a Massachusetts accent has to pronounce the words “Arthur the Aardvark” in public. 

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