If you missed Stephen Colbert’s appearance on Meet the Press on Sunday, you’re in luck– there’s an extended version, which contains about five more minutes, below. Over the course of the interview, host David Gregory covers a lot of ground. Not only do we get an inside look at the character Colbert plays on The Colbert Report, but the two also explore the type of impact that character has on the show’s viewers, on mainstream media and on political discourse. We even get a brief glimpse into the writing process at The Colbert Report, why Colbert wanted to write another book and tons more.
Naturally, the first presidential debate was a hot topic as well, specifically about Romney gaining ground in the polls because of his positive performance. “He was just a walking, shambling mound of weakness. Even the people who liked him, didn’t seem to be behind him that strongly. People were stepping out of his boat,” Colbert says about Romney’s pre-debate public image. “…Now he’s the man. Now, he’s got these long, luscious coat tails and everyone’s jumping on board.”
The most interesting portion of this rich chat, in my opinion, was the few minutes Colbert and Gregory spoke about SuperPACs, a concept Colbert and co. at Comedy Central have covered at least once a week for an entire year. In short, SuperPACs are organizations who are legally permitted to raise money for their chosen candidate, while on paper have no official affiliation with said candidate. In other words, the newly installed form of political fundraising is completely corrupt.
“What I found out was is that there’s an entire industry in politics, which i didn’t know — I suspected — there’s a politico-industrial complex that is not only raising money, but that is built around making money off the fact that there is so much money in politics. And, that there are almost no rules,” Colbert says. “People kept on saying, ‘Should you be doing this? Isn’t this a little dangerous, to be pointing out to actually get a ruling from the FCC that for the first time there are no lines between corporate interests and political interests?’ And I always felt that’s like someone saying, ‘I know there’s this tiger of money over there, but don’t worry– we got him in a cage.’”
“And I just go, ‘Do you mind if I just check the lock?’”
“‘No, please. It’s dangerous to check the lock.’”
“And I went over and just touched the door of the cage, and it came off in my hand. It’s not my fault that there’s no lock on that. Wouldn’t you rather know that there is? And for me the joy was, everything I learned while I did it, was a new subject that I could make jokes on that, at the time, no one was talking about.”
Check out the full interview below. You will not be disappointed.