Big Bird emerges as somewhat divisive figure in Minnesota, new polling says

Sixty-one percent of Minnesotans heart Big Bird.
Sixty-one percent of Minnesotans heart Big Bird.

By now, you know the backstory. Last Wednesday, during the first presidential debate, Mitt Romney vowed to cut federal funding for PBS, saying "I love Big Bird... But I'm not going to keep on spending money on things to borrow money from China to pay for it."

-- Obama up 7 in Minnesota, Klobuchar up 19, says new poll
-- Mike Parry polling behind "Neither" two weeks before 1st District GOP primary

Romney's comment -- and Obama's 'you can't be serious?' responses to it -- spawned infinite internet memes and turned the yellow furry fella into a major political player. And as is often the case with major political parties in our two party system, Democrats and Republicans have divergent views about Big Bird's favorability, including right here in Minnesota.

It isn't exactly Karl Marx versus Ronald Reagan stuff, but here's what the latest Public Policy Polling Minnesota survey has to say:

Minnesota voters support federal funding for PBS by a 56/29 margin, including 55/27 with independents. They also give Big Bird a 61/7 favorability rating although there is somewhat of a partisan divide on him with Democrats giving him a 72/5 rating and Republicans just a 48/11 one.

Turns out 32 percent of Minnesotans are "not sure" how they feel about Big Bird, a finding that prompted this quip from MPR's Bob Collins:

The rest of the survey contains few surprises. Obama still leads Romney here in the Land of 10,000 Lakes by 10 points, and Michael Brodkorb's idea of putting a write-in candidate in Kurt Bills' place doesn't look so bad these days, as Amy Klobuchar leads her U.S. Senate contest by a whopping 57-to-31 spread.

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