Bloggers on Stephen Colbert's presidential run.

The latest chatter in cyberspace.
Oct. 22 2007 6:25 PM

Colbert '08

Bloggers cheer and bemoan Stephen Colbert's announcement that he is running for president. They also congratulate the new (young, Indian-American) governor of Louisiana and debate whether it matters that J.K. Rowling says Albus Dumbledore is gay.

Colbert '08: On The Daily Show, Stephen Colbert announced his intention to run for president—in his home state of South Carolina only. Most bloggers are gleeful, and some even earnestly so: "While it may be a farce, like his staunch republican jargon and his evangelical christian views, it may be just what America needs," writes enviromental blogger Candice at Cathartic Prose. " … I'd vote for him over the crooks running on the republican ballot and the fakers on the dems."


But some think that Colbert's candidacy will only distract from the real candidates and issues. Ron Mwangaguhunga at Mediabistro's FishbowlNY was offended that a fake candidate got real airtime on Tim Russert's Meet the Press: "Colbert, we cannot fail to note, has no chance of becoming the next President of the United States. Zero percentage! Russert would be better served covering the real election of who will lead this country at a crossroads and let Colbert sell his own books on his own time."

David Oxenford, a D.C. attorney at Broadcast Law Blog,is delighted to explain the complications that would ensue if The Colbert Report were on a network and not cable: "[F]or an employee-candidate who is on the air every day, the opponent can go back 7 days and be entitled to equal time for the amount of time that the candidate's recognizable voice or image was broadcast. So if … one of his opponents asked for time, they could get 20 minutes or so of free time for each of his shows."

James Poniewozik at Time's Tuned In is troubled that Colbert's appearance on Meet the Press didn't look much different than when Russert hosted any other candidate: Colbert was "skewering the clubby Washington press routine that gives a platform to this empty bluster without calling it what it is. The only thing that made Colbert's opening statement a joke, after all, was Colbert's presence; if Mitt Romney or John Edwards had said the same thing in front of Russert, would anyone have batted an eye? Would Russert?"

Read more about Stephen Colbert's candidacy.

A break from tradition: Louisiana has elected Bobby Jindal as its next governor, making him the nation's first Indian-American governor. His victory is seen as a rebuke to Kathleen Blanco, the current Democratic governor widely regarded as mismanaging the response to the destruction of hurricanes Katrina and Rita. Conservatives cheered the win by Jindal.

Erick Erickson, a conservative political consultant and Louisiana native at Red State, is jubilant: "Louisiana sucks in a way that is soul killing because it is such a … beautiful, wonderful place, and yet it is so dysfunctional it saps and taxes (quite literally, they tax everything there) your talent and your energy and you leave if you can, like I did. Think of the United States if Reagan had claimed victory after 200 years of Carter, instead of just 4. That's what this is like. … It's safe to go home now. Freedom stirs."

Conservative Ed Morrissey at Captain's Quarters sees ramifications for the rest of the country: "If he can clean up Louisiana and return New Orleans to health and safety, Jindal may get a lot more attention in eight years as a Republican candidate for the White House -- and at 44, he could electrify conservative politics in 2015."

Most everyone agrees with Denyse O'Leary ­­­at Intelligent Design blog Uncommon Descent: "The news I've heard about new Louisiana governor Bobby Jindal is that he threatens to break with a centuries-old Bayou tradition by being both a governor and an honest man."

Read more about Bobby Jindal.

The rumors are true: At a reading at Carnegie Hall, J.K. Rowling answered a lingering question from the Harry Potter series: Did Hogwarts headmaster Albus Dumbledore ever find true love? "I always thought of Dumbledore as gay," Rowling responded.

At BreakOUT News, a blog associated with the Bravo network, Dennis Hensley wasn't surprised after reading the last book: "There he was, studying alongside some handsome dude who later turned out to be the most evil guy in the world. They spoke pretty, well, fondly of each other. And you know, we kinda suspected, but thought we were reading too much into it. … We found ourselves wondering, 'is this gay?' Turns out –uh, yeah. … Maybe one day – it will even be mentioned IN the books."

Seth at L.A.-based Defamer admits he'd placed his bets elsewhere: "Funny--we had always pegged perennial bachelor-bear Hagrid, forever doting over his pedigreed lapdragons, to be the secret Nimbus 2000-polisher of the Potter universe."

"[I]t's so rare to witness a completely honest exchange in a setting as public and orchestrated as a Carnegie Hall event," writes Judy, who attended the reading, at Parents magazine's Goodyblog. "It was clear that JKR didn't plan to out Dumbledore. She just cares about being true to her readers."

Read more about Albus Dumbledore's past.

Laurel Wamsley, a former Slate intern, is a writer living in Washington, D.C.


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