With the papalcy up for grabs come Feb. 28, Stephen Colbert did his best to give an American the "Colbert Bump," exhorting his fans to vote for his "personal BFF," Cardinal Timothy Dolan.
"That's Bishop Friend Forever," he gushed about the Archbishop of the New York Diocese, which made it awkward when his staff informed him rank-and-file Catholics don't get to vote for Pope Benedict XVI's successor. But Colbert was already annoyed that the selection process was getting scrutinized like a typical election, with MSNBC host Chris Matthews going so far as to call it "a horse race."
"Yes, it's a horse race, Chris, thank you," said Colbert, a devout Catholic. "The Heir of St. Peter, the Vicar of Christ, the rock on whom Jesus built his church -- yeah, basically the same as the Iowa straw polls."
Regardless, Colbert brought out his "Papal Speculatron 7500" to get a feel for the leading contenders, and Dolan, he felt, had at least one edge over Canadian Cardinal Marc Ouellet: the fact that Ouellet is Canadian.
"The pope can not be polite," Colbert explained, before affecting a McKenzie Brothers-like accent. "Sore-ry, but I think God might not want you to use a condom, eh?"
Watch Colbert's take on the unexpected papal vacancy, aired Monday on Comedy Central, below.
The Colbert Report
Get More: Colbert Report Full Episodes,Political Humor & Satire Blog,Video Archive