Reported by ABC News’ Evan Harris:
When someone called the South Carolina GOP offering a half million dollars to help finance the state’s Republican presidential primary, state party officials must have thought the offer was too good to be true, and they were right.
That potential donor was comedian Stephan Colbert who, although reportedly serious about donating the money, demanded the primary’s naming rights in exchange.
“I can’t offer that kind of no-strings-attached-money without getting something in return,” Colbert wrote in an op-ed in South Carolina’s State newspaper published Thursday. “I told them I wanted the naming rights to the primary, and a nonbinding referendum on the ballot.”
Colbert’s offer came after reports that the Republican Party was struggling to raise the funds needed to conduct its South Carolina primary. As Colbert wrote in his op-ed, “Enter Colbert Super PAC.”
“The counties need the money, and Colbert Super PAC wants to give it to you; call it a Christmas Miracle,” the comedian wrote. “Let’s put this late unpleasantness behind us and, in 2012, hold the greatest primary of all time.”
Colbert proposed that the Republican Party’s primary in his home state of South Carolina be named “The Colbert Super PAC South Carolina Republican Primary.”
Earlier this month, Colbert launched a campaign to host a Republican presidential debate in South Carolina. “Ever since Donald Trump dropped out of his own debate,” Colbert posted on his show’s Facebook page, “there has been a giant, ego-shaped hole in the Republican primaries.”
National Geographic Wild and Cesar Millan, the Dog whisperer, later agreed to host the debate with Colbert. Colbert proposed that the debate be called the Serious, Classy Republican Debate.
Colbert also grabbed headlines last summer when he formed his own Super PAC, which he described in his recent op-ed as “a political action committee that can receive unlimited funds to spend on political speech in unlimited quantities.”