By Jeff Labrecque
August 16, 2011 at 04:56 PM EDT
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Stephen Colbert’s campaign to propel Rick Parry to victory in the Ames Republican Straw Poll failed, but he was simply outmaneuvered. As eventual winner Michele Bachmann explained to a crowd of supporters, she was offering voters an air conditioned tent, chairs, Randy Travis LIVE!, and a petting zoo! Also… money. (Which is the norm for the Ames straw poll.) Her campaign reportedly sponsored 6,000 people for the $30 fee it cost to vote. Some rushed right to the polls to deliver Bachmann her victory. Others, apparently, went to the mall.

“Bachmann got a commanding 80 percent of the votes she paid for,” said Colbert. “That’s pretty impressive. I say this proves she could win the general election assuming she can get 50 million voters into a field, pack them with barbecue, and let their children pet Randy Travis.” Take a look at Colbert’s post-Ames analysis.

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