Following yesterday's surprising news that Republican Sen. Jim DeMint of South Carolina was leaving the Senate in January to head the Heritage Foundation, thoughts immediately turned to the only man qualified to replace the Tea Party politician: Stephen Colbert.

"Is Stephen Colbert running for the U.S. Senate?" wondered USA Today. "Stephen Colbert For Senate?" pondered The Huffington Post. "Are we ready for Sen. Colbert?" rhetorically asked the New York Post.

"Stephen is honored by the groundswell of support from the Palmetto State and looks forward to Governor Haley's call," Colbert's publicist Carrie Byalick told Mother Jones.

And on last night's Colbert Report, Stephen decided to nudge Nikki Haley toward the keypad by asking his viewers to help him launch a full-throated campagin.

"I want you to take to the Twitters," he told the loyal residents of Colbert Nation, "I want you to tweet at Nikki Haley why she should appoint me to the U.S. Senate with the hashtag #SenatorColbert."

If Colbert does decide to run for Senate, he will be no stranger to the game: The constantly-in-character comedian has nominated himself for president twice, and ran the award-winning Super PAC Americans for a Better Tomorrow, Tomorrow.

[video via Colbert Nation]