Steven Colbert, beloved comedian, a man who does not see race, a man who has his own eagle mascot (albeit Canadian) , and who is not afraid to pose in front of a portrait of himself (posing as himself in front of himself, in front of himself…), has declared himself a presidential candidate…in South Carolina. He will be running in his home state on both tickets, as a Democrat and a Republican, a strategy he does concede “may allow him to lose twice”.
Here is the clip of Colbert filling out his paperwork.
Colbert in ’08 has become a rallying cry for those who are fed up with the current candidates, would like to see a third party candidate, or, let’s face it, can’t get enough of what is by all accounts the greatest American (no, seriously, google “the greatest American” and see who shows up – and we all know google cannot lie).
So how serious is his candidacy? Well, grassroots campaigning has already begun, as indicated by the social meter that is Facebook. The group “1,000,000 Strong for Steven T. Colbert” as of this posting has 867,083 members. Not impressed? Consider that “1,000,000 Strong for Obama” has been around for a year, yet its group total of some 381,000 was passed by Colbert’s group in less than four days.
Yesterday’s Rasmussen survey indicates his support is picking up as well. As a third party candidate, a remarkable 13% of voters gave him the nod over frontrunners Hillary Clinton and Rudolph Guiliani. We claim this race is over, and that Hillary is already planning her redecorations of the Oval Office, but that was pre-Colbert. This is a whole new political force to reckon with.
The Washington Post reported on Colbert’s campaign this week that Public Opinion Strategies, another polling firm, found the following:
In the Democratic primary, Colbert takes 2.3 percent of the vote — good for fifth place behind Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (40 percent), Sen. Barack Obama (19 percent), former Sen. John Edwards (12 percent) and Sen. Joe Biden (2.7 percent. Colbert finished ahead of Gov. Bill Richardson (2.1 percent), Rep. Dennis Kucinich (2.1 percent) and former Sen. Mike Gravel (less than 1 percent).
Wow, Bill Richardson. You are behind a comedian…I don’t think your campaign manager is laughing too hard now.
What is Colbert’s platform, you might ask? Well, according to the Washington Post coverage:
He’s ticked that Georgia is known as the Peach State even though, he contends, South Carolina grows more peaches. He’s worried about Chinese shrimp imports hurting his home-state fishermen. And, he adds out of nowhere, “we shouldn’t fall prey to the homosexual agenda.
I’m sure he’ll build on that. But really, won’t this already speak to the primary voters in South Carolina more than what the other candidates have promised?
Like many, I am looking forward to Steven Colbert’s participation in any future debates. The other candidates may practice truthiness, but at least let’s hear from the candidate that coined the word.
For a side of Colbert you hardly ever see, watch his interview with Larry King: