Comedian and late night talk show host Stephen Colbert is not officially on the ballot in South Carolina but he is currently beating the former Utah governor and U.S. ambassador to China according to a Public Policy Polling survey out Tuesday. Colbert, a South Carolina native, leads Huntsman 5 percentage points to 4 among Republican primary voters,
"When I was on his show recently he promised me 'the Colbert bump' and I think we're getting that in New Hampshire," Huntsman said to anchor Shepard Smith on Fox News, chuckling over the news." Now I'm going to be looking for the 'Colbert bump' in South Carolina."
"The Colbert Bump" is a running bit for The Comedy Central funny man; it's an apparent increase in momentum for political candidates that appear on his show. Since Huntsman appeared on" The Colbert Report" in December, Huntsman has at times cited it in jest.
In December, Colbert wrote a humorous op-ed piece in a local South Carolina newspaper stating that he had wanted to help sponsor the South Carolina Republican election by buying the naming rights and call it the " The Colbert Super PAC South Carolina Primary," as well as officially getting on the ballot.
The PPP, a Democratic polling group that uses automated calling system for their surveys, included Colbert in the survey after all the hooplah that was generated by his South Carolina efforts.
"Even if Huntsman finishes second in New Hampshire tonight it doesn't speak well for his prospects down the line that he's running behind Stephen Colbert," Tom Jensen of Public Policy Polling said in an emailed statement.