Stephen Colbert’s Joke Super PAC Tops $1 Million

Stephen Colbert's super PAC, Americans for a Better Tomorrow, Tomorrow, has raised a little over a million dollars.

Stephen Colbert’s super PAC, Americans for a Better Tomorrow, Tomorrow, has raised a little over a million dollars.

Politico (“Stephen Colbert’s FEC report: Big money!“):

Between July 1 and Dec. 31, Americans for a Better Tomorrow, Tomorrow collected more than $825,400, ending the year with nearly $674,000 cash on hand, according to disclosures filed over night with the Federal Election Commission.

[…]

n an accompanying memo to the Federal Election Commission, Americans for a Better Tomorrow, Tomorrow Treasurer Shauna Polk noted that the super PAC raised had raised $1,023,121 as of Monday.

Then, Polk offered an unconventional statement. “Stephen Colbert, President of ABTT, has asked that I quote him as saying, ‘Yeah! How you like me now, F.E.C? I’m rolling seven digits deep! I got 99 problems but a non-connected independent-expenditure only committee ain’t one!'” Polk wrote, adding, “I would like it noted for the record that I advised Mr. Colbert against including that quote.”

Colbert has made forming a super PAC — then operating it, handing it over to fellow comic Jon Stewart, then stealing it back after flirting with a presidential run in South Carolina — a centerpiece of his nightly Comedy Central show, “The Colbert Report.”

It’s been a rather amusing bit, highlighting the absurdity of the rules governing the process–rules which are now quite literally a joke. To the extent that he’s trying to demonstrate that Citizens United gives corporations too much influence on the process, though, it’s not at all clear he’s succeeding. It’s not as if his joke ads are having meaningful impact on the race, even though he’s spent a significant amount of money running them.

FILED UNDER: Popular Culture, Quick Takes, US Politics,
James Joyner
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James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.

Comments

  1. mantis says:

    To the extent that he’s trying to demonstrate that Citizens United gives corporations too much influence on the process, though, it’s not at all clear he’s succeeding.

    That’s not the point. Everyone who defends Citizens United seems to think that is the point, but it’s not.

    Also, he’s just getting started.

  2. Dude, I think he’d be in significant trouble if he was impacting the race.

    He’s carefully avoiding that.

  3. Tsar Nicholas says:

    $1M contributed to a joke PAC run by a waste of oxygen? Not surprising. Keep in mind the target demographic of that show. The same holds true for Stewart. Quite literally it’s a bunch of airheaded college students. As stated previously if Generation Y were a stock I’d be short selling it with leveraged puts. They’re not going to make it. I grieve for their parents.

  4. Don’t you mean John Stewart’s Super PAC, The Definitely Not Coordinating with Stephen Colbert Super PAC?

    Or did Stephen Colbert get control back again?

  5. MarkedMan says:

    Tsar Nicholas: “Literally”? I don’t think that word means what you think it means…

    And you have no clue whatsoever about The Daily Show/The Colbert Report demographic.

    . “[T]he number of people older than 55 watching ‘The Daily Show’ rose by 25% [in May 2009, compared with May 2008], 22% for ‘The Colbert Report.'” More ominously, “the number of people between the ages of 18 and 34 (the most coveted demographic) watching ‘The Daily Show’ fell 14%, 15% for ‘The Colbert Report.'”

    “When you start to see the age creep up on a show like that, you wonder whether the show is sustainable,” warned Laura Caraccioli-Davis, head of entertainment at media planning agency Starcom. “It’s systematic of the fact that at Comedy Central they need to continue developing shows for younger viewers.”

    The median age of “Daily Show” viewers in May 2009 was 41.4, and the median age of “Colbert Report” viewers was 38.3. That’s still pretty youthful compared to “The Late Show with David Letterman” (54) and the Leno-era “Tonight Show” (55).