October 17th, 2007
03:21 PM ET
15 years ago

Colbert announces bid for the White House

Colbert said Tuesday he will run for president in South Carolina.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - He hinted at a possible run for the White House on CNN's Larry King last week, but Comedy Central host Stephen Colbert made it official Tuesday night: he's jumping into the presidential race in his home state of South Carolina.

"After nearly 15 minutes of soul-searching, I have heard the call….I am hereby declaring that I will enter the presidential primary in my native South Carolina, running as a favorite son," Colbert said on his show Tuesday night. "I defy any other candidate to pander more to the people of South Carolina - those beautiful, beautiful people."

South Carolina is one of four lead-off primary states that will likely play a crucial role in determining the eventual nominee of both parties.

On Larry King last Thursday, Colbert laid out his potential electoral strategy, saying he'd see how he did in South Carolina before deciding to move on to other states. (Watch Colbert discuss his political life on CNN's Larry King)

"I think maybe there's something I could offer the campaign on a state-by-state basis," he said. "I would target a state individually…a test run."

Colbert, author of the recently released “I Am America (And So Can You!),” also told King he'd seek to run as both a Democrat and Republican.

"I'd let the people decide what party I belong in," he said. "I don't dictate the people's actions."

In the interview with King, Colbert also brushed aside suggestions that it was a "cop out" to run in both parties, calling it instead courageous, because, "I could lose twice." (Related video: Watch more of Larry King's interview with Colbert)

In the slim chance that he wins a party's nomination, Colbert said Tuesday he'd consider either Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee, Russian President Vladimir Putin, or himself for a running mate.

"Colbert-Colbert - that's a strong ticket," he argued.

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- CNN Ticker Producer Alexander Mooney

Filed under: South Carolina • Stephen Colbert
soundoff (249 Responses)
  1. Frank, Ottawa, Ontario!


    October 17, 2007 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  2. Robert, Chicago, IL

    This is a "wind up", right?
    Colbert, since his "split" from Jon Stewart hasn't been funny, he overacts, and is almost embarrasing. In fact, I even question Stewart's effectiveness anymore (how can he even read a book a day – anyone else noticed that?) – but Colbert can't even run a TV show – a COUNTRY? Please, at that rate DARE I mention it, even a FOUR LETTER word might be better?
    No. Neither.
    Not funny.

    October 17, 2007 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
  3. Liz, Frankfort, IL

    Colbert for President! Stephen, I'd gladly be your "Monica".

    October 17, 2007 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |


    October 17, 2007 12:25 pm at 12:25 pm |
  5. Kara, Omaha, NE.

    I can't tell, is this for real? If it is, it will be really interesting to see where this goes...

    October 17, 2007 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm |
  6. Amanda Rowe, Godfrey, IL

    He's got my vote.

    October 17, 2007 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm |
  7. MP

    As far as I'm concerned, this isn't a joke. We've got someone down to earth running for president. Much better than all of the callous, born-n-bred-for-politics über typical candidates currently running.

    Finally. A candidate I can vote for without wondering if I should've penciled in Mickey Mouse.

    October 17, 2007 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm |
  8. Anonymous

    he's got my vote

    October 17, 2007 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm |
  9. Brian, Baltimore, MD

    Guess I've got to change my voter registration to South Carolina...and register as both Republican and Democrat. Vote early, vote often!

    October 17, 2007 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |
  10. Jeremy, portland, oregon

    This a joke, isn't it?

    October 17, 2007 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |
  11. John Doe, Smithfield NY

    Colbert-Colbert in '08!

    October 17, 2007 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |
  12. Adam, Greenville, SC

    Yes, Yes, & more Yes! I am a native South Carolinian and I am very proud of Stephen & I support his decision to bring truthiness to the palmetto state.

    October 17, 2007 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |
  13. Robert, Atlanta, GA

    How has no one commented on this? This is a mockery of the political system, but no more of a joke then most of the candidates actually attempting a serious campaign. He very well may do well in South Carolina, and who knows some of his self proclaimed "truthiness" might be just what this country needs.

    October 17, 2007 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  14. joseph, austin, tx

    I thought robin williams already did that.

    October 17, 2007 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  15. Gerry, New York, NY

    I hate to put a damper on all this fun, but isn't he Canadian?

    October 17, 2007 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  16. TP

    Thank heaven, and not a moment too soon!

    This is exactly what this nation needs, a candidate that anyone across the political spectrum of US politics can listen to without becoming envious of those fellow citizens afflicted with bulimia.


    October 17, 2007 12:33 pm at 12:33 pm |
  17. louie, Md

    He's got my vote!! he probably has the least dirty hands of all the candidates!!

    October 17, 2007 12:37 pm at 12:37 pm |
  18. David

    Colbert and Stewert would be like the Robin Williams movie Man of the Year...and i would absolutely vote for him as well.

    October 17, 2007 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm |
  19. Bradley Schaubs, Greeley, CO

    Seems like a fine gentleman...I'll keep him in mind. And as for comdedians in office, even Dane Cook would make a better VP than Cheyney. Imagine: a Colber-Cook ticket...How awesome is that?

    October 17, 2007 12:40 pm at 12:40 pm |
  20. Thomas, St. Petersburg, FL

    I'm still waiting for the punchline...

    October 17, 2007 12:40 pm at 12:40 pm |
  21. Anna, Sacramento, CA

    YES! He has my vote already.

    October 17, 2007 12:40 pm at 12:40 pm |
  22. John A. Starnes Jr. Tampa FL

    Even if Stephen Colbert submitted to a full lobotomy, he'd emerge with more wit and intelligence and soul and insight than The Decider could ever hope for in his wildest, scotch-and-cocaine driven dreams.

    October 17, 2007 12:41 pm at 12:41 pm |
  23. Ryan, New York, NY

    I wonder if he'll appear in the Daily Show and interview with Jon??

    Actually – if Jon ran.. the guy would be a serious threat!

    Posted By James, Phoenix AZ : October 17, 2007 11:42 am

    Colbert appeared on the Daily Show last night.

    October 17, 2007 12:41 pm at 12:41 pm |


    October 17, 2007 12:42 pm at 12:42 pm |
  25. Bethany - Manhattan, Kansas

    He's got it. Or at least, there is going to be a higher voter turnout next year.

    I'm writing his name in for the presidency – primaries don't mean squat to independents!

    October 17, 2007 12:43 pm at 12:43 pm |
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