October 22nd, 2007
11:30 AM ET
11 years ago

Colbert on presidential run: I am serious

Colbert insisted he's serious about getting on the South Carolina ballot.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Is Stephen Colbert serious when he says he wants to run for president in South Carolina?

Yes, according to the fake-news host himself who appeared on NBC’s Meet the Press Sunday after the very-real presidential candidate Barack Obama.

“I think a lot of people are asking whether—they say is this, is this real, you know? And to which I would say to everybody, this is not a dream, you’re not going to wake up from this,” Colbert told host Tim Russert. “I’m far real-er than Sam Brownback, let me put it that way.”

“I don’t want to be president,” he added. “I want to run for president. There’s a difference.”

Brownback, a Republican senator from Kansas, dropped his bid Friday after disappointing fundraising and low placement in most polls.

Colbert acknowledged his presidential campaign wouldn’t extend past his home state of South Carolina and said he will consider it successful if he just captures one state delegate.

“It’s proportional voting on the Democratic side - all I need is enough votes on the Democratic side to get one delegate, and I’ll feel like I’ve won. Because if, at the Democratic National Convention, somebody has to stand up and say, “The proud state of South Carolina, the palmetto state, the home of the greatest peaches and shrimp in the world, casts one vote for native son, Stephen Colbert,” I’d say I won.

Colbert has said he will seek to be a candidate in both the Democratic and Republican primaries in the Palmetto state. On his show Wednesday, he signed paperwork for both ballots. But as The Ticker reported last week, it remains to be seen whether the State parties will allow that to happen.

But Colbert, who didn’t break from his conservative-TV host act during the entire Meet the Press interview, gave plenty of hints he might not be too serious after all, including the revelation that he would consider embattled Idaho Sen. Larry Craig as his running-mate.

Though the Comedy Central host refused to say if he’d met “in the same room” with Craig to discuss the potential ticket.

“Sorry, my lawyer’s telling me to say no more,” he said.

- CNN Ticker Producer Alexander Mooney

Filed under: Stephen Colbert
soundoff (148 Responses)
  1. David, Washington, DC

    There's a shocker... the redneck from Texas who drives a gas guzzling SUV is opposed to Colbert... I am sure if it were up to you Tom from Texas you would have W for another 8 years... what a joke. Why don't you do us all a favor and bury your head in the sand... oh wait its already there.

    October 22, 2007 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  2. Rob, NYC

    Vote Colbert in '08!!!

    He's has to be just as good as any of the other idiots running. And he is without a doubt better than that fool in the White House now.

    October 22, 2007 10:44 am at 10:44 am |
  3. Paul, New York

    Actually Tom from Texas, the precious minority of the population that watches those shows actually uses the 10% of brain function in their skulls as opposed to the rest of the country. Stay in school kids!

    October 22, 2007 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  4. Gary,Detroit, Mich.


    The answer to your question is...FOX News!

    October 22, 2007 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  5. Steve, Louisville, KY

    Tom: why did you leave out the other kooks in the audiences of O'Reilly, Carlson and Coulter?

    October 22, 2007 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
  6. Karen,nj

    This man is completely out of his mind and I will not discuss this character anymore. End of Story!

    October 22, 2007 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
  7. Andy J, Upstate, NY

    The sad thing is that I would trust Colbert more so than I would trust 95% of the schmucks running to be the President of our great country. I'm an independent, and disgusted with the two dominant political parties in this country. I think that Colbert is bringing to our attention that most of the candidates are just a big joke- AKA Hillary Clinton, Fred Thompson, ect... Is this the best our country can muster up?

    October 22, 2007 10:51 am at 10:51 am |
  8. Greg, Ohio

    I guess you missed the finding that viewers of John Stewart's show are more informed on political issues.

    Source: http://www.cnn.com/2004/SHOWBIZ/TV/09/28/comedy.politics/

    October 22, 2007 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  9. Nancy Miller, Hickory, NC

    As Larry King said, there are at least two Stephen Colberts, maybe more. I caught the end of Tim Russert's interview, and I thought it was Stephen Colbert the fake pundit giving the interview, not the "real" Stephen Colbert. Tim was clearly frustrated.

    October 22, 2007 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  10. Bubba the Comedic Genius, Swainsboro GA

    Why not? Dan Quayle once ran, and he's a bigger joke than Colbert. Colbert would be as bad a president as GW Bush or Jimmy Carter, meaning we'd survive him and heal eventually. Why not elect him?

    October 22, 2007 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  11. Liz, Springfield VA

    The answer to your question is very easy Tom: Rush Limbaugh!!

    October 22, 2007 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  12. Oliver, Louisville, KY

    This is like the stuff people (including me at one time) pull in high school student government elections. The dismaying thing is that in this Internet Age there are probably enough young Facebook and MySpace voters to get Colbert what he wants. This is the direction the country is headed though, because now more than ever there is incredibly liberal pressure applied to every student when they go online. College was already a left-pushing force and now kids have an even bigger opportunity to listen to and follow fellow young know-nothings who are masquerading as the wise by creating Facebook groups dedicated to some hot-button, bleeding-heart issue.

    October 22, 2007 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  13. Ian, Canton, Oh

    Tom, in answer to your question, Bill O'Reilly's show. Although anyone who can watch W's state of the union address without either laughing or crying qualifies as either a fool, idiot, or dead.

    October 22, 2007 11:01 am at 11:01 am |
  14. Rodney, Atlanta, GA

    It's funny that Colbert has become a metaphor in all respects for today's politicians. They're all fake! They're all putting on a front. Nobody's real anymore. They all just do and say what they think will get them elected, and the American people look stupid for falling into the facade. Nothing gets done and this nation suffers.

    October 22, 2007 11:01 am at 11:01 am |
  15. Frank, Phoenix AZ

    I think it says it all that the people attacking Colbert cannot do so without the most puerile and childish insults (he's gay! he's a freak! he's an idiot! and so are his fans!). That right there encapsulates the whole reason why the US political process is already a mockery... without Colbert having to do or say a single word.

    October 22, 2007 11:03 am at 11:03 am |
  16. Tiffany, Springfield, PA

    To Nancy in NC:

    I saw the interview, too. Tim wasn't frustrated at all - he was clearly in on the joke. Honest to goodness, how could he NOT be?

    October 22, 2007 11:05 am at 11:05 am |
  17. CB Seattle WA

    Whose audience has the bigger collection of kooks, dupes, freaks, fools and idiots: Colbutt's, Jon Stewart's or Bill Maher's?

    A. Ann Coulter
    B. Rush Limbaugh
    C. Bill O'Reilly
    D. Sean Hannity
    E. All of the above

    October 22, 2007 11:05 am at 11:05 am |



    October 22, 2007 11:06 am at 11:06 am |
  19. John P NYC

    I would venture to say that despite Colbert's political inexperience he would do a better job than Bush, Cheney and Rummy. All he has to remember is don't start any wars and don't spend more money than you have. If he does that he will perform better on foreign policy and economic issues.

    Tom from Texas, you really do fit the stereotype of a dumb Texan. My apologies to other more enlightened Texans, I am sure Tom doesn't speak for you.

    October 22, 2007 11:07 am at 11:07 am |
  20. dlake, machesney park, Il

    i have told people that if Hillary is the nominee then I am voting for colbert – even if his run is put on.

    October 22, 2007 11:09 am at 11:09 am |
  21. Ahmad Zubair Sahar, New York, NY

    i think he is an idiot. i think that is all that needs to be said.

    October 22, 2007 11:10 am at 11:10 am |
  22. Frank, D.C.

    The Pew Research Center for the People and the Press has published a new study that measures the public’s knowledge of national and international news. The results are not likely to surprise anyone but Fox viewers, who come in at the bottom of the list (they probably don’t know that there is a list – or what a list is). And, although I’m not surprised to see the Daily Show/Colbert Report place high on the list, it is a bit of a jolt to see them at the very top.

    October 22, 2007 11:11 am at 11:11 am |
  23. Scott, Boise

    He has my Vote, and pick John Stewart for his Vice President. Woo Hoo !
    More brains there then all of the WH put together now that Melon Head one has left.

    October 22, 2007 11:14 am at 11:14 am |
  24. MediaJunkie, Washington DC

    It's a joke people! Laugh. That's the intention. But if you can't get the stick out of your behind for 10 seconds the fact that South Carolina won't let it happen should ease your fears. Even if S.C. does allow it, the people who actually vote in primaries won't vote for him even though they'll probably say they will in the weeks leading up to the primary.
    I wish Colbert would be allowed to run. It'll will draw attention to what a joke politics in this country has become.
    By the way, Tom from Texas, all three shows are extremely well researched and written. You don't have to agree with what they're saying, but don't insult the intelligence of the audience.

    October 22, 2007 11:15 am at 11:15 am |
  25. Richard, St. Paul, MN

    I'd vote for Colbert over any of the Republican whackos running. At least you know where he stands on issues.... and photo ops!

    October 22, 2007 11:16 am at 11:16 am |
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