10/05/2012 03:21 pm ET Updated Oct 05, 2012

Obama: 'Elmo, You Better Make A Run For It!' (VIDEO)

Obama issued a big warning to Sesame Street's Elmo during an outdoor rally at Cleveland State University on Friday.

"Elmo, you better make a run for it," Obama said.

The warning was a response to Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney's remarks over funding for PBS during Wednesday's presidential debate.

"I'm sorry, Jim, I'm going to stop the subsidy to PBS," Romney told debate moderator Jim Lehrer, a PBS newscaster. "I like PBS. I love Big Bird. I like you too."

Romney's statement sparked criticism from more than just Obama. Several parody Twitter accounts were created for "fired" Sesame Street characters, and an 8-year-old girl in Alabama wrote an angry letter to Romney telling him to "find something else to cut off!"

HuffPost's Jen Bendery reported earlier:

Whether or not it was because of the jobs numbers, Obama was clearly having fun at Friday's event. He repeatedly poked fun at Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney, who said during Wednesday night's presidential debate that he liked Big Bird but still wanted to gut public television funding.

Romney is "finally getting tough on Big Bird. Rounding him up. Elmo's got to watch out, too," Obama said to laughs. Romney is "going to bring down the hammer on Sesame Street. Makes perfect sense."

He later wondered aloud why Romney thinks "Big bird is driving the deficits" instead of wealthy people benefiting from tax cuts. The line, of course, drew more laughs.



Presidential Debate