Stephen Colbert appeared on Friday's "Morning Joe" for a raucous, hilarious chat with the MSNBC show's hosts.
Appearing live in South Carolina, Colbert had the audience eating out of his hand from the very start. The highly energetic crowd chanted his name repeatedly. "They like you!" Mika Brzezinski told him.
Colbert talked about his "presidential run" in the state. Since he failed to get his name on the ballot, he has encouraged people to vote for Herman Cain — who does have a place on that ballot — instead. The two are appearing at a rally in South Carolina later in the day.
"Herman Cain has qualities I admire," Colbert said. "He's a family man, he's pro business, he has something I don't think I'll ever have — a place on the South Carolina ballot." He told the crowd, "If people hunger for a Colbert candidacy, they should vote for Herman Cain."
"Why do the leaders of South Carolina hate freedom so much?" a rather giddy Joe Scarborough asked.
"They love freedom," Colbert countered. "That's why we fought a Civil War." He then took a swing at Scarborough.
"I don't understand how you can be 'Morning Joe brought to you by Starbucks,' because when I see you, you look more like 'Evening Joe brought to you by Jack Daniel's,'" he said.
Willie Geist then asked him what his opinion on open marriages was (a reference to the allegations currently swirling around Newt Gingrich.)
"I just can't believe that a journalist of your stature would lead with such garbage like that!" Colbert blustered, echoing Gingrich's fury at Thursday night's GOP debate. "I don't care to answer that question, Willie." Then, he said, "I'm all for it...but you need two people to make that vote." Another quality line about l'affaire Gingrich: "Here's the thing I don't think Newt Gingrich gets credit for: a lot of politicians screw around...but he was enough of a gentleman to ask permission first! He is a Southern gentleman. That's what Robert E. Lee would have done!"