Ahead of President Barack Obama’s planned introduction of “To Kill a Mockingbird” on USA Network Saturday night, the Washington Free Beacon has polled the first family’s cameo TV appearances — and found the majority of them seem to go to networks owned by major donors.
USA Network is owned by NBC Universal, whose show “The Biggest Loser” saw a special appearance by Michelle Obama this past week. Michelle Obama has also appeared on (NBC-owned) Bravo’s “Top Chef” and had multiple guest stints on NBC late-night shows hosted by Jay Leno and Jimmy Fallon.
NBC’s two parent companies are Comcast and General Electric, both with close ties to the Obama administration, the Beacon points out:
Obama named GE chief executive Jeffrey Immelt to his Council on Jobs and Competitiveness in January 2011. He enjoys an even friendlier relationship with Comcast executive vice president David Cohen, a former lobbyist.
Cohen has emerged as a prolific fundraiser for Obama in 2012, raising at least $1.2 million for the president after hosting a $10,000 per head fundraiser at his Philadelphia home. He has contributed $224,850 to liberal groups and candidates since 2007, including a $2,300 donation to Obama in 2008.
Comcast has followed suit, flooding Democrats and Obama with money since 2008, donating $2.3 million to Democrats. That is $300,000 more than it gave to Republicans.
It’s not just NBC: The Beacon reports Michelle Obama has made a “slew” of appearances on Viacom-controlled companies, including Comedy Central and Nickelodeon. One of her Nickelodeon appearances was on the children’s show “iCarly,” where she showed off some dance moves, and at the Kid’s Choice Awards last week.
Viacom employees have reportedly donated more than $115,000 to Obama since 2008.
Michelle Obama will cap her two-episode arc on “The Biggest Loser” Tuesday and follow it up with an appearance on Comedy Central’s “The Colbert Report” Wednesday.
Read the full report at the Washington Free Beacon here.