June 30, 2011 at 06:05 PM EDT

Stephen Colbert claimed victory today after the Federal Election Commission granted him a unique loophole to use his network’s finances to run his newly formed political action committee. In a 5-1 decision, commissioners granted the Comedy Central comic a media exemption to campaign finance rules that will allow The Colbert Report to produce ads supporting or opposing federal candidates.

After the ruling, Colbert filed papers to officially create Colbert Super PAC and then addressed a crowd of supporters outside:“It has been said that freedom isn’t free. Today, we have placed a sizable down payment. Today, we put liberty on layaway.” Watch his speech after the jump.

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