Stephen Colbert Running for President

Stephen Colbert is running for president.

Stephen Colbert has announced his candidacy for president on “The Colbert Report,” tossing his satirical hat into the ring of an already crowded race.

“I shall seek the office of the president of the United States,” Colbert said Tuesday on his Comedy Central show as red, white and blue balloons fell around him.

Colbert, 43, had recently satirized the coyness of would-be presidential candidates by refusing to disclose whether he would seek the country’s highest office — a refusal that often came without any prompting. Shortly before making the announcement, Colbert appeared on “The Daily Show” (the show that spawned Colbert’s spin-off) and played cagey, claiming he was only ready to consider a White House bid. He entered the studio set pulled by a bicycle pedaled by Uncle Sam and quickly pulled out a bale of hay and a bottle of beer to show that he was “an Average Joe.”

Colbert said his final decision would be announced on a “more prestigious show,” which turned out to be his own. “After nearly 15 minutes of soul-searching, I have heard the call,” said Colbert.

While his candidacy is obviously a joke, I’m not sure he wouldn’t be formidable. Celebrity goes a long way in politics and he’s got a huge following. Plus, he’d have the advantage of getting votes both from people who agree with the things he says and from those who realize he’s doing satire.

Newshogger shamanic uses the occasion to get some digs in at Ron Paul supporters, quipping, “The biggest difference between the Paul and Colbert evangelists? Colbert’s fans know their guy’s candidacy is a joke.”

UPDATE: Here’s the video, courtesy Comedy Central.

FILED UNDER: Campaign 2008, US Politics, , , , , , , ,
James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is a Security Studies professor 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. yetanotherjohn says:

    I hadn’t considered a “joke” candidacy as part of a third party. The problem of course is that of getting on the ballot in the various states. I suspect the green party and the ‘unity party’ will do the spade work. The real question is who they will put up (and who the two main parties put up).

    Of course the real loser would be Obama as the youth vote would go to the person with the best jokes.

  2. Steve Verdon says:

    I’m at a bit of a loss for all the jokes about Ron Paul supporters. Why not make similar jokes about Huckabee, Edwards, or Tancredo supporters. After all, these guys appear not to have much of a chance either. Or is it just that Paul supporters are just more vocal?

  3. James Joyner says:

    I’m at a bit of a loss for all the jokes about Ron Paul supporters. . . . is it just that Paul supporters are just more vocal?

    Mostly. Any mention of Ron Paul on the Web will get a swarm of Ron-bots responding, usually without actually reading the post in question.

  4. John425 says:

    It isn’t that Paul supporters are more vocal it’s because Ron Paul is the joke but doesn’t know it.

    Doing away with the FBI, CIA, Federal Reserve, IRS (well, maybe the IRS should go), returning to the Gold Standard, doing away with paper money and true alliances- well, that’s not conducive to 21st century survival.

  5. Steve Verdon says:

    Okay, now I’m starting to think the real joke are on those making jokes about Ron Paul and his supporters. While I’m not a supporter of either Paul or the Gold Standard one can have reasonable views and discussions about the Gold Standard. And I’m curious where you get the idea that Paul supports getting rid of paper money? Was it this speech? I haven’t read the whole thing, but it looks like one long rant against fiat money. If one thinks inflation is bad, it isn’t such a wacky position.

  6. RenaissanceRoss says:

    you know what…I’m so so sick of stephen colbert and his little double negative bullshit. I used to like him but he keeps playing his little role of a conservative republican that still appeals to liberals. It’s bullshit that he’s always playing devil’s addvocate but is always funny about it so he leaves everything obscure and appeals to everyone. To this day, no knows the real Stephen Colbert or where he even stands. Jon Stewart should run for president.

  7. Brent says:

    Getting rid of the CIA is a joke? I think not. Gathering intelligence is good, overthrowing democratic governments and attempting to assassinate leaders is not.

    Alan Greenspan even noted that it is a good question, if it is a good idea to end the Fed and go back to the Gold Standard. Though Paul would legalizing competition, allowing a new gold-backed currency to circulate. Interesting idea I’d say.

    And doing away with alliances? I think we’d make more. This imperialism we have going on only makes us more advisories than alliances.

  8. Joel says:

    Of course, this article refers to Ron Paul as a joke. How surprising. I wonder what they will say when the majority of Americans turn out to be “ronbots?” What about Foxbots? My brother quoted me word for word Sean Hannity’s rant about how great Giuliani is. Since there’s no main-stream-media pundit out there supporting Ron Paul how can he have so many followers?
    I’m beginning to think that the Establishment is getting really frightened of Ron Paul and that’s why Stephen Colbert has “decided” to run. The Stephen Colbert audience overlaps Ron Paul supporters, (University students for example.) Am I being paranoid? Maybe, but after they blew up the World Trade Center I don’t know what they are capable of. I am never going to watch the Daily Show or Colbert Report ever again. They make jokes about all our problems MEANWHILE BUSH IS THREATENING TO START WORLD WAR III!!! I’m not laughing.

  9. I wonder what they will say when the majority of Americans turn out to be “ronbots?”

    It is in unending claims by Ron Paul supporters that he actually has the support to win not only the GOP nomination, but the presidency, that keeps the jokes coming.

    There is no empirical evidence to suggest that Paul is anything other than a single-digit candidate who will be considered a radical over-achiever if he wins in the teens in any of the early primaries.

  10. Chris says:

    I’m gonna vote for him.

  11. Chris says:

    When I say him, I mean Colbert.

  12. Steve Verdon says:

    There is no empirical evidence to suggest that Paul is anything other than a single-digit candidate who will be considered a radical over-achiever if he wins in the teens in any of the early primaries.

    If this turns out to be the case, I think it would be somewhat important. Even more so if the Republican candidate loses by a similar margin to the Democratic candidate.