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.

Click here to see CNN's new political portal: CNNPolitics.com

- CNN Ticker Producer Alexander Mooney

Filed under: South Carolina • Stephen Colbert
soundoff (249 Responses)
  1. PollM, Dallas Tx

    "I'd let the people decide what party I belong in," he said. "I don't dictate the people's actions."
    So what party should candidate Stephen Colbert belong to? --> http://www.youpolls.com/details.asp?pid=731

    October 17, 2007 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  2. 2.0weblogs.net/work

    Its about time, I see no reason why he can't win. I wonder what Bush will pull at the press corp conference when he is selected to jibe Colbert. maybe one of these...


    October 17, 2007 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  3. David Hilo HI

    Oooh... there are seriously "serious" people on this board.

    Too bad... they're the ones that need some levity the most.

    And considering the "choices" we have in either party, how could Colbert be any worse?

    October 17, 2007 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  4. harry, miami fl

    just imagine colbert debating, a la robin williams in the man of the year. funny but making sense...yeah go colbert....colbert nation lives.

    October 17, 2007 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  5. Roger, Nashville, TN

    Do you think that someone in South Carolina that does not vote would vote Colbert for me?

    October 17, 2007 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  6. J.J., Ann Arbor, Michigan

    As funny and fitting as this is, and yes although I would vote for him, we all must realize this is both a satire and publicity stint. Too bad he doesn't have a real shot...

    October 17, 2007 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  7. Geoff, Princeton, NJ

    Aww poor Dougy gets offended by The Colbert Report 🙁 And Dennis Miller was funny 15 years ago K BYE!

    October 17, 2007 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  8. matt

    Colbert would probably make a btter Prez than some of the idiots running for real.


    October 17, 2007 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
  9. Jake Mansfield, OH

    Liberals get their news from Comedy Central, nah we get entertained by it. Republicans get their news from Faux News and comedians like Rush Limbaugh, who are neither A) entertaining B) funny or C) informative.

    October 17, 2007 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  10. drbcool, Claremont, CA

    "It's the biggest no-brainer in the history of mankind."

    October 17, 2007 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  11. Ben

    It is so obvious that you have never watched the show. To compare Stephen Colbert to Anne Coulter actually makes me laugh out loud.

    Sadly, the media in our country has become so biased, unconventional sources of news are frequently better. Some of the best election "reporting" this year has been on The Daily Show and The Colbert Report.

    If you think that you are getting accurate information on mainstream networks, I am sorry to say that you are not. And I, my friend, am a journalist.

    October 17, 2007 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
  12. Cheri Ciccaglione Vernon, CT

    Colbert is pulling a publicity stunt. It has already been done in Hollywood movies by Robin Williams. He should not make a joke of our United States Presidency. If he does go through with this farce it will be harmful to the real candidates by taking away votes. I understand that people who are dissatified with the choices will go along with his joke but that does not make his decision to run right. He is not a qualified candidate. He is a funny straight man who delivers the news in a humorous manner. This talent does not qualify him to be a world leader.

    October 17, 2007 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  13. TF Meyer

    I certainly hope he's kidding. With all the problems that a president will face in the next four years, we don't have the time or the energy to deal with a second rate comedian. Go home Colbert, go home.

    October 17, 2007 03:05 pm at 3:05 pm |
  14. Mary, Michigan

    Can't wait to see where he takes this! He does a great job at taking all the corruption and hypocrisy and making us laugh. And after the laughter is over, then comes the discussion. And then, action!

    October 17, 2007 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  15. Oluseyi Lusi..Irvington NJ

    This just shows how much of a joke the American gov`t actually is....how is the rest of the world suppose to take us seriously when one of the biggest talks of the 08 campaign is a comic running...Don`t get me wrong...I admire the fact that any Billy Bob with enough money can run...but i also believe this campaign coming up is the most important one ever!!!!

    October 17, 2007 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  16. Evan, Milwaukee

    Doug of New Jersey

    First of all, chill out. You're getting awfully worked up over a joke. Clearly you don't get it.

    Second, Dennis Miller is not funny. Period. He wasn't when he was a liberal and he's still not as a conservative. He's intelligent and insightful but his rants and references are too esoteric for their own good.

    Third, please provide some examples of Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert's "hate based humor." To compare them to Ann Coulter is just beyond ridiculous. Stewart and Colbert are satirists and everyone knows that (or at least everyone should). Coulter is just a talking head that says anything for attention then defends herself by saying she was just joking.

    Get a clue.

    October 17, 2007 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  17. Tim, Lexington, KY

    I wish I lived in SC! I would definitely vote for Colbert.

    If it's a Diebold voting machine then I'll vote for him several times.

    October 17, 2007 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  18. gosteve

    Hey – Doug in NJ, did you wake up on the wrong side of the evolutionary tree. having trouble descrimianting between satire, belief-based reality logic? that's what I thought.

    October 17, 2007 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  19. Josh, Virginia Beach, VA

    Colbert 08'! Simply Awesome!

    October 17, 2007 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  20. Ryan, Columbus, OH

    For those that care, there are sites out there that sell Stewart/Colbert '08 Tshirts. I have one. Looks like it's backwards, though... should be Colbert/Stewart '08.

    October 17, 2007 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  21. Brittany Poughkeepsie, NY

    The world would be such a better place. Colbert 2008! 😉

    October 17, 2007 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  22. Rich Chicago, IL

    There's more ACTUAL news on Comedy Central than the fuzzy feel-good propaganda on FoxNews, I tell you that much.

    October 17, 2007 03:21 pm at 3:21 pm |
  23. Kevin Rosemont, IL

    Also, claiming that Colbert and Stewart are based on hate and Miller and Coulter aren't is completely insane nonsense, which is about par for the course from the ultraconservative right-wing GOP, mister D from Jersey

    October 17, 2007 03:23 pm at 3:23 pm |
  24. Evan, Milwaukee

    Brandon from Nashville – Are you insane? What involvement do you think the RNC had with Colbert's "decision"? You obviously know nothing about Colbert or how his show/character works.

    October 17, 2007 03:25 pm at 3:25 pm |
  25. William, Savannah Ga.

    Run Stephen run; Georgia for Colbert

    October 17, 2007 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
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