Last Tuesday, comedian Stephen Colbert announced that he was running for President in South Carolina on his late-night show The Colbert Report. A clip of his appearance with Jon Stewart (in which he spoke of running) can be watched at
Colbert will be running under both the Republican and Democratic parties in his home-state and, providing he files the correct paperwork by November 1st, will appear on the ballot.
While his sudden foray into the world of politics isn’t necessarily surprising, it’s definitely a humorous turn to the 2008 presidential elections. Stephen Colbert is not a serious candidate for the coveted title of Commander-In-Chief. He has said, since announcing his intentions to run, that he doesn’t want to be elected President—he simply wants to run for President. When asked who will be his running-mate, he suggested such politicians as Larry Craig, who was recently embroiled in a sex scandal.
The candidacy of Stephen Colbert is, sadly enough, not going to impact the outcome of the actual elections in the slightest. It is his way of poking fun at the absurdity that is the American political machine. Constitutionally, there is nothing about Stephen Colbert that makes him unfit to be President. I personally think he could bring a much-needed sense of humor that is currently lacking from the presidency. A shift of perspective from politician to comedian might help revitalize the political infrastructure in the White House.
Stephen Colbert is truly a candidate without any political bias—the only views he represents are his own. His ultra-conservative caricature serves to both make fun of Democrats and Republicans. His goals are best put in his own words: “If, at the Democratic National Convention, somebody has to stand up and say, ‘the proud state of South Carolina, the palmetto state, the home of the greatest peaches and shrimp in the world, casts one vote for native son, Stephen Colbert,’ I’d say I won.”