Rootstrikers Urges Colbert To Preserve PAC

Lawrence Lessig's Rootstrikers group has launched a petition to get comedian Stephen Colbert to re-launch his Super Pac when he moves to CBS to replace Letterman next year.  

The Colbert Report on Comedy Central ends its run next month.

"Yes, it's a funny bit. But Colbert's PAC brought the issue of money in politics to a mainstream audience unlike anything before it. His fake ads and commentary on the state of our campaign finance system were invaluable," says the group. "They were so good, in fact, they won him a Peabody Award."

In an e-mail solicitation, Rootstrikers, which aims to strike at the financial roots of political corruption, which it sees as special interest funding of political campaigns, said that the fight is easier when a comedian makes it easier to talk about.

John Oliver, for example, like Colbert an alumnus of the John Stewart school of political skewering, is credited with helping drive some of the millions of comments that clogged the FCC's network neutrality docket with his skewering of the FCC and ISP's.

At press time the petition had 2,296 signatures.

Colbert launched the PAC in summer 2011 as a way to comment on the Citizen's United decision's removal of restrictions on direct corporate and union treasury fund expenditure for electioneering ads -- advocating the election of a particular candidate.

John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.