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Beanie Babies of First Daughters Malia and Sasha

Beanie Babies of First Daughters Malia and SashaTy, the company who make Beanie Babies, is selling a pair of dolls called Marvelous Malia and Sweet Sasha, modeled after Barack and Michelle Obama’s daughters.

Confusing reports suggest that Ty initially said that the dolls were inspired by the Obama sisters.

But now the company says that the names were chosen because they were beautiful, and that the dolls are not modeled after the first daughters. Really? With the same names, and the dolls launched right before the inauguration of their father, and with Obama merchandise selling like hot cakes?

Americans spent $200 million dollars on Barack Obama merchandise in November alone, and sales of memorabilia are still going strong in January. Everyone wants a souvenir of the new president, from official merchandise to bizarre and sometimes disturbing objects like Barack Obama glow-in-the-dark wine bottle stoppers and Obama soap-on-a-rope.

Barack Obama is a politician and chose to be a public figure so I guess while often tasteless, Barack Obama merchandise is a reasonable consequence of being just about the most prominent public figure in the world.

But cashing in on his daughters? Michelle Obama issued a statement last week, saying it was “inappropriate to use young, private citizens for marketing.”  I agree that they are in poor taste and it’s even worse of Ty to deny that the dolls are inspired by the sisters.

Is it right for Ty to sell Sasha and Malia dolls?

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