November 6th, 2007
09:49 AM ET
11 years ago

Obama supporters pressed Dems to keep Colbert off ballot

Prominent Obama supporters in South Carolina pressed Democratic party officials to keep Stephen Colbert off the primary ballot.

COLUMBIA, South Carolina (CNN) - Two prominent supporters of Illinois Sen. Barack Obama's presidential campaign in South Carolina called state Democratic Party officials and urged them to keep funnyman Stephen Colbert's name off the primary ballot, according to party officials and Obama supporters.

The Obama campaign denied any connection to the phone calls.

"Democrats in South Carolina, including supporters of ours, had strong feelings on both sides of the ballot issue, and ultimately it was South Carolina Democrats who made this decision," said Obama's South Carolina communications director Kevin Griffis.

The South Carolina Democratic Party Executive Council voted last week 13-3 to block Colbert's bid for the Democratic primary.

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- CNN South Carolina Producer Peter Hamby

soundoff (393 Responses)
  1. Mark Heck, Middletown, DE

    I guess the Democratic Party is not "all inclusive" like they say they are. It would be refreshing to have a working class guy running this country instead of a bunch of dimwits born with silver spoons in theirs mouths telling us they know how to help us. In reality are we a democracy when the political elite pick who were allowed to vote for. Kind of sounds like Communist Russia or China. Way to go Obama.

    November 6, 2007 08:50 am at 8:50 am |
  2. Valerie Heis, Raleigh, NC

    This is a well known Obama tactic. He has kicked other candidates off the ballot before. He did it in Chicago by challenging signatures.

    The "nice guy" stuff is so very false. Obama is the most cut-throat and scary politician of them all.

    November 6, 2007 08:51 am at 8:51 am |
  3. Laura Weems Panama City Beach Florida

    WHY is everyone taking this so seriously? I think he is just a viable candidate as Ross Perot was and HE got on the ballot.

    November 6, 2007 08:52 am at 8:52 am |
  4. Spanky, Syracuse, NY

    The oppressed are now oppressing interesting.

    November 6, 2007 08:52 am at 8:52 am |
  5. Jen, Gainesville, FL

    I am glad that Colbert was stopped. He was making a joke of the political system by offering to run on both ballots.

    November 6, 2007 08:58 am at 8:58 am |
  6. Dillon

    TO: Chris, Atlanta Georgia

    Trust me, if that all it takes for you not to vote for Obama, it's safe to say that either you weren't going to vote for him anyway or you the most fickle voter in history.

    November 6, 2007 08:58 am at 8:58 am |
  7. Greg, Lexington KY

    One more example that Barack Obama isn't what he portends to be. He is one more hungry, desperate, win-at-all costs politicians.

    November 6, 2007 09:00 am at 9:00 am |
  8. Gravitas, Not Talktoomuch

    I guess there is only room for one joke candidate on the ballot, and Obama is just protecting his territory.

    November 6, 2007 09:01 am at 9:01 am |
  9. J Hawk, Charleston SC

    Once again it goes to show that no matter who you are , you cannot even get on the ballot unless you have BOAT LOADS of MONEY. Freedom isn't free... You got to have the Benjamins or you are just another peasant. Looks like Colbert is still a peasant too.

    November 6, 2007 09:08 am at 9:08 am |
  10. Ron, TX

    This story is horribly misleading. Did the Clinton campaign send it out to everyone?

    Two people who -support- Obama were calling them. Not two people who -work- for Obama. Are the candidates supposed to send out letters to their supporters with a list of all foreseeable stupid actions of what NOT to do?

    November 6, 2007 09:10 am at 9:10 am |
  11. Lee, Fort Myers, FL

    Does anyone know what the word satire means? Colbert planned his "rejection" to coincide with the writers' strike. All of this ties in to publicity for his book.

    November 6, 2007 09:11 am at 9:11 am |
  12. Liz, Florence OR

    The real joke is that if he was allowed to run, Colbert would win.
    I'll write him in.

    November 6, 2007 09:13 am at 9:13 am |
  13. Sean, Cincinnati, OH

    Haha, what a joke. It's sad when you're that worried of your presidential bid that you can't have Colbert on the ticket. Plus, Colbert defintely would have beat him.

    November 6, 2007 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  14. Jane, Columbus, Ohio

    Way to go OBAMA crew... When idiots like Colbert disrespect the process and make fun of it they should be refused. I never really liked Colbert and now I will stop watching his how.

    OBAMA has my vote !!!

    November 6, 2007 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  15. East Lansing, MI

    I was a little dismayed when Obama started attacking Ms.Clinton but this
    Colbert business makes him look desperate.It was a joke. I think they would have done much better to play along.It was only one state.But it is important to see how people react situations like this and Obama is probably losing voters rather than gaining support. I know he lost me.

    November 6, 2007 09:15 am at 9:15 am |
  16. Kim, Indianapolis, Indiana

    I agree with Chris from Atlanta. I thought we (the voters) could write in the name of our candidate anyway. Guess who I'll STILL be voting for. I deserve to make my own choice.

    November 6, 2007 09:16 am at 9:16 am |
  17. Karen,ny

    I for one would be interested in knowing why the Republicans and possibly the Democrats would go beyond and above their call of duty to intentionally cause havoc on voters lives. This is truly unbelievable and I can see no possible exlanation for this.

    November 6, 2007 09:16 am at 9:16 am |
  18. Steve, New York

    LOL Do any of you people see Colbert was ONLY running in SC. EVEN if he won SC he still had 0 chance in becoming the Prez. BECAUSE HE WAS NOT RUNNING IN ANY OTHER STATE! Colbert was just waiting time and money. When will America stop reacting through emotion and irrationality and start reacting with logic and rationality?

    November 6, 2007 09:18 am at 9:18 am |
  19. Russ, B'ham AL

    A candidate running FROM a comedian. It's a joke ....right?

    November 6, 2007 09:18 am at 9:18 am |
  20. PSK Lakeside, AZ

    Thank you, Rep. Sellers, for being another politician that wants to smooth things over for us poor dolt Americans. "Another Obama endorser who regularly appears at campaign events, state Rep. Bakari Sellers, also made phone calls to members of the party's executive council about Colbert, according to Sellers.

    "I placed the calls as a concerned Democrat, realizing that we are a country in despair," Sellers told CNN. "It is not a time for games or to make a mockery of the process." . Well, well, well... just when you think a candidate might allow an American to actually think for themselves. SORRY it might take a few votes away from YOUR candidate- some of us in this country, SICK with politics as usual, enjoyed Mr. Colbert's run. Shame on you for considering yourself a "decider" for everyone else. Schmuck.

    November 6, 2007 09:24 am at 9:24 am |
  21. Kelly Hackleman, Burke, VA

    Are you KIDDING? This is just another CNN ridiculous spin. An Obama SUPPORTER (of which there are hundreds of thousands of us) was just following the rules for filing to run for president and said so. Period.
    I can't believe you've wasted space to write such pointless article; I can't believe I took time to read it, and I can't believe anyone would actually think that Barack would have any motive to do this.

    Just another Clinton News Network desperate attempt to make up negativity where there is none concerning her number one major threat.

    November 6, 2007 09:25 am at 9:25 am |
  22. Bobby Schenectady,NewYork

    I thought This was America people. What ever happen to any one
    (Black,White,Hispanic,Doctor,Lawyer,George Bush) can become president.
    Either Colbert's rights were trampled on or I have been lied to all my life.

    November 6, 2007 09:25 am at 9:25 am |
  23. Peter, Woonsocket RI

    Yet more confirmation that Obama is a sleazy operator, just like most of the other candidates. He scr-wed over the guy who set up a MySpace site for him, and now he's scr-wing Steven Colbert and the people who wanted to vote for him.

    Neither he nor Hillary will ever get my vote.

    November 6, 2007 09:27 am at 9:27 am |
  24. Jim, Rice Lake WI

    I didn't see the humor of Colbert's candidacy. It was never a matter of the right to run for office as much as it was self-promotion by a TV personality. And, as the experts say, TV is the wasteland that attracts 14-year old mentalities, so we all know where Colbert's "campaign" was going. These are serious times, and Colbert had absolutely nothing to offer, not even good humor.

    November 6, 2007 09:27 am at 9:27 am |
  25. Pete, Minneapolis MN

    I could be wrong but anyone can run for president, assuming they are American born and over 35. Colbert can still run, just not on the Democratic ticket.

    November 6, 2007 09:28 am at 9:28 am |
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