Big Bird is safe for now -- at least according to Reading Rainbow host LeVar Burton, who tells TMZ, he's confident PBS will survive after the election ... no matter who wins ... despite Mitt Romney threatening to cut funding to the network if he's elected.
Burton had just cast his vote in L.A. -- take a wild guess for who -- and we asked if he was optimistic about PBS' survival next year post-election (in light of Romney's infamous anti-Big Bird agenda).
Burton replied, "I am. In my heart, I absolutely am."
He said, "A lot depends on what happens this evening. But no matter what happens, PBS needs to reorganize its way of being effective."
Burton -- who has already expressed his outrage over Romney's anti-PBS stance -- added, "A lot of people need to acknowledge that the world is changing, and we got to change with it or get left behind."