Colbert for president (again)
January 12th, 2012
08:08 PM ET
2 years ago

Colbert for president (again)

(CNN) - Faux-news host and comedian Stephen Colbert announced Thursday night he was launching his second run for president in South Carolina.

"I'm proud to announce I plan to form an exploratory committee to lay the groundwork for my candidacy in the United States of South Carolina," Colbert said at a taping of his show Thursday evening.

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Colbert said voters in South Carolina saw him as an alternative to current GOP frontrunner Mitt Romney.

"Clearly my fellow South Caroliniacs see me as the only Mitternative," Colbert said.

However, according to South Carolina election law, Colbert may not get his way. The state's website said write-in votes are prohibited in political party primaries or for president and vice president.

South Carolina Election Commission spokesman Chris Whitmire told CNN with the Republican presidential primary just nine days away, there "won't even be a way for someone to do that because it's not allowed under the law."

The comedian missed the November 1 filing deadline to get his name on the GOP primary ballot. Whitmire added that, in accordance with the law, there's no write-in space on the electronic and paper primary ballots.

Colbert, who filed to run for the White House as a Democrat in 2007, lost a fight with South Carolina's Democratic Party when it removed him from the state's 2008 primary ballot, a step that ended his presidential bid.

But the comedian has been back in full force this election cycle with his own Super PAC, called "Making a Better Tomorrow, Tomorrow."

In October, the Federal Election Commission allowed Colbert to form the group, which can raise and spend unlimited amounts of money on a candidate as long as it doesn't coordinate with a candidate's campaign.

In the taping of his show Thursday, Colbert confronted that hurdle, officially signing over the super PAC to fellow Comedy Central host Jon Stewart.

As a satire on super PAC rules, the group created a commercial endorsing "Rick P(a)rry" just days before the Texas governor launched his White House bid this summer.

"So to prove we're truly uncoordinated, we're asking voters to write in Parry with an A – as in America, IowA, or PresidAnt," Colbert said. "You can feel confident he's not asking us to do that."

In the fall, Colbert also made news when he offered $500,000 of super PAC funds to cover the cost of South Carolina's primary on January 21, following a heated battle within the state over who would pay for the contest-the state party or the taxpayers.

In return, Colbert, a South Carolina native, asked for the rights to change the name of the primary to the "The Colbert Super PAC South Carolina Republican Primary."

The state did not take him up on the offer.

– CNN's Shawna Shepherd, Ashley Killough and Julian Cummings contributed to this report.

Also see:

Santorum warns voters of scary rhetoric

Rivals grudgingly defend Romney from Bain criticism

Haley warns Republicans against Romney attacks

Gingrich: South Carolina will be 'Armageddon' of attacks


Filed under: 2012 • South Carolina • Stephen Colbert
soundoff (239 Responses)
  1. Maine LIberal

    Colbert is the legitimate son of Pat Paulsen "Just a common, ordinary, simple savior of America's destiny."

    January 13, 2012 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  2. Anonymous

    wonder of CNN management enjoys supporting Comedy Channel ?? giving this coverage as 'news' when it clearly is a publicity stunt.....didn't the Smothers Bros or somebody chronically run for prez each time? .....

    I like Colbert's show – but it isn't news and frankly it seems like he is stretching for material....like trying out for the speed skating team at the last winter olympics.....

    January 13, 2012 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  3. joh

    "...it's not allowed under the law."????????????? I'm not allowed to vote for whomever I want to? I thought we lived in a free democracy!

    January 13, 2012 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  4. Reasonably

    Be nice if he did run. Talk about not being part of the establishment!

    January 13, 2012 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
  5. Squealy

    @chucksheen9 who wrote: "Only liberals would vote for a Hollywood personality".

    Is that so? Do the names Donald Trump, Fred Thompson, Ronald Reagan and Arnold Schwarzenegger mean anything to you?

    January 13, 2012 03:01 pm at 3:01 pm |
  6. Andrew

    We need someone to explain the pitfalls of presidency to the populace. Obama did no such thing but Colbert is a clear advocate of transparency (even in jokes he's already told the American people more about the political system then every president to sit in office since the advent of media combined).

    January 13, 2012 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  7. Jack Tors

    This guy is such an attention whooore. And he's not funny any more. Way too predictable. The novelty is gone, and that's all he had.

    January 13, 2012 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  8. mirrorlogic

    I'm 'Envious" of Colbert! I mean having the chance to run for President against such a fine stable of Republican candidates - of course Stephen will have to change his first name to something more catchy like "Nick" - after all Romney avoids Willard like the plaque. And of course "Nick" (a.k.a. Stephen) will need to announce he was worried about being fired once, as living off millions can be a scary proposition. Finally, he will need to state clearly he is running to restore America to its former greatness, etc, etc, etc. Because we all know living in the time of our great forefathers, when slavery and outdoor plumbing ruled the world, in a time where child labor could bring home the bacon was the bomb.

    January 13, 2012 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  9. adam

    it is so funny reading these posts. here's a news flash for the clueless majority: colbert is not a conservative; that is an act. and this was intentionally done beyond the filing deadline because the WHOLE POINT of this satire is to point out the absurdity of super PACs, not to run for anything. Evidently that has been lost on a dense american public.

    January 13, 2012 03:05 pm at 3:05 pm |
  10. Garrapata Red

    @Truth and Nothing But the Truth : "Democrats and leftists" attempt to control the dissemination of information? Are you on crack? Let's see.....Watergate....Iran-Contra.....Jack Abramoff...invasion of Iraq on bogus premise of WMD. Yeah, you've got a real sterling track record there.....maybe it's time for some truthiness, Truth!!!

    January 13, 2012 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  11. arthur

    A modern day Pat Paulson.

    January 13, 2012 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  12. CowHoos

    We have had nothing but comedians in Washington for twenty years. It is time to have some serious leadership. My vote goes to Colbert is the person for the job. If South Carolina does not let him on the ballot in his own state they are afraid he will get elected.

    January 13, 2012 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  13. adrifter

    No joke. I think would make a better president than any on the current GOP candidates. Probably better than Obama. Over the last few months, Colbert has done more to show the stupidity of the Citizens United ruling than anyone else

    January 13, 2012 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  14. yogi

    interesting that the Republicans who post here have absolutely no sense of humor. And neither do they see that the present field of GOP candidates is a bunch of clowns. How sad...
    Obama 2012

    January 13, 2012 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  15. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Welcome to the club buddy! There are days when everything I post gets refused, no matter what the content. All the while, multiple posts by RudyNYC, Sniffit, Obama Mama flood the articles. It is why this board always appears to be so liberal. I've sent numerous complaints via the CNN web site and suggest you do the same
    ------------------------
    Or you can just go spew your Lies and Nothing but More Lies somewhere else....and take your little cheerleader Gurgi with you with her "my best friend is Black" tired routine.

    January 13, 2012 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  16. glyder

    just another snot nose with a 15 year old mentality.

    January 13, 2012 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  17. Chad

    Funny, witty guy, bit you'd be voting for a fucticious person. His personality is the result of talented writers behind the scenes. Remember how not-funny or witty his show was during the writer's guild strike? If his team of writers (advisors) were along for the ride, we'd be electing an entorage for president, not a sole "decider".

    January 13, 2012 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  18. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Meanwhile...they shut down the "GOP history in the making" story regarding Romney and his cult being possible the first non-Protestant GOP nominee with just 29 comments showing. That story had, IMO, a lot more importance than this triviality with Colbert, but I guess the discussion was getting hot and heavy and too close for comfort for the powers that be.
    So is life.

    January 13, 2012 03:15 pm at 3:15 pm |
  19. Tracy

    I was really excited about this until I realized that the only one this will hurt is Ron Paul. Staunch Republicans will vote the same way nomatter what. Only Paul has the youth vote... A person voting for Romney will still vote for Romney... A person voting for Paul, might want to vote for Colbert...

    January 13, 2012 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  20. Girl Achromatism

    @Timmy
    who said:

    "All you morons who think Colbert is so great. State ONE of his positions. Being funny is not a prequisite for president. With idiot voters like you no wonder we end up with dismal failures like Obama"

    Although I don't normally engage internet trolls, I just want to make sure everyone understands that Stephen Colbert isn't actually running for office. He is pointing out the dangerousness of the Citizens United Supreme Court ruling that says corporations are people and money is speech.

    BTW If corporations were people Rick Perry would have executed one by now. And if money was speech, we'd all have equal amounts.

    January 13, 2012 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  21. Marie MD

    How fitting yet again but much better this year. A comedian joining a group of teapublikan clowns! :)

    January 13, 2012 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  22. Truth and Nothing But the Truth

    Dominican mama 4 Obama
    Or you can just go spew your Lies and Nothing but More Lies somewhere else....and take your little cheerleader Gurgi with you with her "my best friend is Black" tired routine
    ========================================================================================
    HAHAHAHA!!! And give you free reign to spread your liberal lies and fantasy??? Like I said, liberals just LOVE to shut down the free flow of information and TRUTH. Maybe YOU should take your lies somewhere else???

    January 13, 2012 03:20 pm at 3:20 pm |
  23. Daniel

    why has no major news network picked up the Voter Fraud coming out of NH? Is it because Okeefe has done a service for the voters yet again and showed how easy voter fraud is in that state?

    January 13, 2012 03:21 pm at 3:21 pm |
  24. Tom

    Stephen, do you intend to sue aver the failure of the State of Caroliniac to honor your plan to run?

    January 13, 2012 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |
  25. Priori

    This is news? The man is a cartoon. Why not announce Donald Duck is running, too?

    January 13, 2012 03:27 pm at 3:27 pm |
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