'This Week' Transcript: Gov. Rick Perry and Stephen Colbert

COLBERT: Well, there are already a couple of third-party candidates out there possibly. Trump is thinking about going third party, Ron Paul might go third party. So I might just leap to like fourth of fifth party.

STEPHANOPOULOS: He all but ruled it out when I talked to him last week.

COLBERT: What?

STEPHANOPOULOS: He all but ruled it out when I talked to him last week.

COLBERT: Who?

STEPHANOPOULOS: Ron Paul.

COLBERT: Ron Paul? That's not what he said to me. So I think I might go as a fourth or fifth party candidate, George.

STEPHANOPOULOS: So you're open to running through this whole year.

COLBERT: This is an exploratory. When you're exploring, you don't know what you're going to find.

STEPHANOPOULOS: The voting is in six days in South Carolina.

COLBERT: Well, George, I mean, just because something's difficult doesn't mean it shouldn't be worth doing. You know, I'm exploring right now. I'm a one-man Lewis and Clark. And I'm just looking for my Sacagawea.

STEPHANOPOULOS: What will your decision turn on?

COLBERT: Excuse me?

STEPHANOPOULOS: What will your decision turn on?

COLBERT: If there's a hunger for Stephen Colbert out there. That's what we're exploring. Or, George, if I find out in my exploratory phase that one of the other candidates might be better for the United States than a Stephen Colbert. Then I've got 5 percent in South Carolina, and I'm willing to throw my weight behind one of the other candidates. All they have to do is come kiss my ring like they did Donald Trump's. And they can come visit me this week if they want.

STEPHANOPOULOS: You're serious about this pope thing. But I want to turn to what your supporters are saying. There's a super PAC supporting you in South Carolina. They released a new ad overnight taking a very tough shot at Mitt Romney.

COLBERT: I have not seen this ad.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: If Mitt Romney really believes...

MITT ROMNEY (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Corporations are people, my friend.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: ... then Mitt Romney is a serial killer. He's "Mitt the Ripper."

(END VIDEO CLIP)

STEPHANOPOULOS: Mitt Romney, a serial killer? "Mitt the Ripper"?

COLBERT: That's powerful stuff. That's powerful stuff.

STEPHANOPOULOS: Doesn't that cross the line?

COLBERT: I had nothing to do with that ad. I have no control over that ad. If anything in that ad is inaccurate, if he did not say "corporations are people," and if he did not make his money cutting up...

STEPHANOPOULOS: You're calling him a serial killer.

COLBERT: ... corporate -- I am not calling anybody a serial killer. I can't tell Americans for a Better Tomorrow Tomorrow what to do. It's not my super PAC, George. It's the super PAC of, and I hope I'm pronouncing this correctly, Jon "Stew-air"? I believe it's a soft "T."

But, listen, if that's not accurate, I hope they take it down. I don't know if Mitt Romney is a serial killer. That's a question he's going to have to answer. But I know one thing, that sounds like it's superstar actor Jon Lithgow voicing that. And he played a serial killer on "Dexter." Two points make a line.

STEPHANOPOULOS: But you're like Newt Gingrich. If it's untrue, you want it to come down...

(CROSSTALK)

COLBERT: Absolutely. I do not want any untrue ads on the air that could in any way be traced back to me.

STEPHANOPOULOS: We've got some questions from viewers on Facebook. Matthew Topper wants to know: "Who will your V.P. be?"

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