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Stephen Colbert Shows How Easy It Is To Game Campaign-Finance Laws
How wacky are U.S. campaign-finance laws? Let Stephen Colbert demonstrate.
On Thursday's Colbert Report the comedian, who has said he wants to be a big political-money player in the 2012 election-cycle, showed how easy it is, with the right Washington lawyer, to game the system.
After learning Viacom was concerned about his running afoul of campaign finance laws if he formed a political action committee, Colbert learned of a workaround, a super pac.
As NPR's Peter Overby reported for the network's newscast:
Colbert has discovered it's the Supreme Court's Citizens United decision that makes Colbert Super-PAC possible.
It lets Colbert take unlimited money from individuals, unions and corporations --
including Viacom which owns Comedy Central.
On the show this past week Colbert got help from Trevor Potter, lawyer for John McCain's 2008 presidential campaign and a former Federal Election Commission chairman.
POTTER: All you have to do is send a cover letter to the commission, that says this PAC is actually a Super PAC.
COLBERT: Where would I get a letter like that?
POTTER: I happen to have brought one for you.
The letter is presumably en route to the FEC.
Copyright 2011 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.