The Colbert piece is funny - but it doesn't tell the whole story (hey, kind of like the "political cartoon" above!)
While a 501(c)(4) organization is not required to file an application for recognition of exemption, it is recommended because it provides public recognition of tax-exempt status, nonprofit mailing privileges, exemption from certain state taxes, and it avoids confusion with the IRS when filing mandatory annual reports.
I guess that's the problem with deriving political insight from comedians....
did you not find the videos funny? They were very funny.
Like I said, Colbert is funny, sometimes. It's just sad to think about all the Obama voters who get their "news" from left-leaning comedians, who aren't telling the whole truth because (a) their job is to tell jokes, and (b) they're left-leaning.
Just as another example, take Daily Show creator Lizz Winstead's recent tweet about the Moore tornado: "This tornado is in Oklahoma so clearly it has been ordered to only target conservatives." This joke wasn't even funny, but it was also based on a falsehood. The joke is premised on the liberal line that tea party groups didn't receive any more scrutiny than any other groups that applied for 501(c)(4) status. That's bullshit.
It's sad to think about all the romney voters who get their "news" from far right entertainers, who aren't telling the whole truth because (a) their job is to pander to the dumbest far right Americans, and (b) half the network is gop presidential candidates.