Thursday, January 19 2012 9:08 PM EST2012-01-20 02:08:20 GMT
In front of many anxious reporters, students and GOP supporters Herman Cain made an endorsement on Thursday, just hours before the CNN debate.More >>
CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCIV) -- One-by-one comedian Stephen Colbert tackled the GOP presidential candidates. His one-liners took a jab at all but, one -- the one not even in the race -- Herman Cain.
"I think people are hungry for a positive campaign so, I'm not going to go after this man's opponents," Colbert said. "I won't be saying things like, 'the only difference between Mitt Romney and a statue of Mitt Romney is that the statue never changes it's position.'"
Colbert sang his way to the hearts of thousands of College of Charleston students by opening up with a musical number: "This Little Light of Mine" accompanied by the CofC choir, followed by the National Anthem. But, it was his comedy that made a lasting impression.
"I came to praise one man. One Her-man. Important note: a her-man is not the same as a she-male. I don't want to frighten off any Santorum supporters," the comedian joked.
Colbert challenged CofC students to take back America and vote for Cain, despite Cain pulling out of the presidential race several weeks ago.
"I want you to vote for Herman Cain because Herman Cain is me. We both refuse to play by Washington's rules. We both flout convention when it comes to things like taxes."
Colbert wants his supporters to check the Herman Cain box on ballots for the SC GOP primary Saturday since Colbert will not be on the ballot himself. Colbert says a vote for Cain is a vote for Colbert.
"Anyone who knows me knows that I have believed in the message of Herman Cain for several days now. And, for so many reasons," said Colbert. "Herman Cain is a business leader, Herman Cain is a family man, Herman Cain is a outsider. In fact, he is such an outsider, he is not even running for president any more. He's a man with ideas. He's a man with conviction. He's a man with a bus with his face on it. Gandhi didn't have that."
Students packed the Cistern Yard at CofC early on Friday, as the event also served as the taping for The Colbert Report. Gates opened to the public at noon, but lines were formed several hours earlier.
"We have got to change Washington from the outside," Cain said after being introduced by Colbert.
Cain said that start's on college campuses in America.
"We, the people, must take back Washington, D.C.," Cain said.
Cain told the crowd, in a more serious tone, to not waste votes. He made light of the humorous rally and told those in attendance not to vote for him, but instead to not waste their vote.
The Colbert-Cain combo spread an infectious laugh across the Lowcountry but, the laughter only went so deep.
"I think a lot of the students really feel very strongly about this country. Very smart students here that really want to make a difference outside of Charleston and across the country," said Devon Jones, a junior at the College of Charleston. "You have to be serious about it and you need to understand what is important to you."
One senior, who wants to be known as "Uncle Sam" said Colbert and Cain would not sway his vote for president.
"I will probably vote in the November election for the republican candidate," he said.
None-the-less, Colbert's appearance made a great excuse for missing class for thousands of students.