In an effort to promote the new availability of the COVID vaccine for children under five, young Muppet Elmo proudly pulled up his sleeve and got the shot himself, according to a video shared by the Washington Post.
And Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Tex) had some problems with the notion.
The iconic red, furry Sesame Street resident, who has been age three-and-a-half since 1984, noted that there was “a little pinch, but it was okay.” His Muppet father, Louie, congratulated Elmo and told him that he was “super-duper” while getting the shot.
“I had a lot of questions about Elmo getting the COVID vaccine. Was it safe? Was it the right decision? I talked to our pediatrician so I could make the right choice,” Louie says in the clip, posted Tuesday. “I learned that Elmo getting vaccinated is the best way to keep himself, our friends, neighbors and everyone else healthy and enjoying the things they love,” he added, before hugging his son.
Cruz rushed to his cell phone in order to share the clip on Twitter, and to criticize the PBS/HBO children’s show for permitting Elmo to “aggressively advocate for vaccinating children UNDER 5,” adding that they “cite ZERO scientific evidence for this.”
Thanks, @sesamestreet for saying parents are allowed to have questions!
You then have @elmo aggressively advocate for vaccinating children UNDER 5.
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) June 28, 2022
In typical fashion, Twitter had a field day with the Senator’s meltdown. Rep. Don Beyer (D-VA) responded to Cruz’s comments by saying his “new feud with Elmo is the maddest he’s been at Sesame Street since his vendetta against Big Bird.”
Ted Cruz' new feud with Elmo is the maddest he's been at Sesame Street since his vendetta against Big Bird.
Both times he was upset because they told children about safe, lifesaving Covid vaccines. https://t.co/vfF35d2X7l
— Rep. Don Beyer (@RepDonBeyer) June 29, 2022
“Both times he was upset because they told children about safe, lifesaving Covid vaccines,” Beyer added.
Last year, Cruz went after Elmo’s Sesame Street co-star, Big Bird, after the Twitter account for the character tweeted about his experience getting the vaccine. “I got the COVID-19 vaccine today! My wing is feeling a little sore, but it’ll give my body an extra protective boost that keeps me and others healthy,” the account tweeted. “Ms. @EricaRHill even said I’ve been getting vaccines since I was a little bird. I had no idea!”
Government propaganda…for your 5 year old! https://t.co/lKUlomnpq1
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) November 6, 2021
Cruz quickly responded, claiming that the tweet was “Government propaganda…for your 5 year old!”