Colbert's Super PAC Sets New, Higher Standard

07/19/2011 05:05 pm ET | Updated Sep 18, 2011

Stephen Colbert's terrible idea, the Colbert Super PAC, is again making a mockery of our campaign finance laws.


The comedian/pundit launched a fresh appeal to "seduce the prudent" on Monday, seeking donations from corporations, unions, other groups, and individuals to aid his drive to "build a better tomorrow, tomorrow."

It's all "100 percent legal and at least 10 percent ethical," he promised.

Colbert delivered his pitch as he yukked it up on camera with conservative activist Sean Parnell, whose Center for Competitive Politics favors unlimited campaign spending, whether by corporations, unions, other groups or individuals.

But while Colbert and Parnell touted secret money on camera, a stream of donor names to Colbert Super PAC, listed in the order their money was received, crawled across the bottom of the TV screen like a stock ticker.

What a great example for other Super PACs, many of which apparently intend to exploit campaign finance laws that allow them to hide their donors! Perhaps secret money solicitors like the Democrats behind the new American Bridge and Majority PACs, as well as long-established conservative fundraisers like the Koch Brothers, the US Chamber of Commerce and Karl Rove's "Crossroads GPS," will somehow be shamed by Colbert's gesture into going public with the names of their supporters.

After all, if Colbert's donors, supporters of a mock pundit who boasts that he may spend their money on things like a private jet and a private jet ski, are unembarrassed by disclosure, what do businesses, groups and individuals supporting real candidates have to fear from going public?