- Associated Press - Friday, September 17, 2010

WASHINGTON (AP) — TV personalities Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert are taking their faux political feud to Washington and plan to hold opposing political rallies on the National Mall just before the November elections.

Mr. Stewart, host of Comedy Central’s “The Daily Show,” interrupted his regular fake newscast Thursday night to announce a “Rally to Restore Sanity” on Oct. 30. He said it’s for people too busy with their normal lives to go to other political rallies.

“We’re looking for people who think shouting is annoying … who feel that the loudest voices shouldn’t be the only ones that get heard,” Mr. Stewart writes in promotion for his rally. “Think of our event as Woodstock, but with the nudity and drugs replaced by respectful disagreement.”

Nearby, Mr. Colbert is planning a “March to Keep Fear Alive.” The host of Comedy Central’s “The Colbert Report” is encouraging participants to bring an overnight bag and five extra sets of underwear.

He wrote the United States is built on three bedrock principles: freedom, liberty and fear.

“They want to replace our fear with reason,” he wrote. “But never forget ‘reason’ is just one letter away from ‘treason.’”

The events come a few weeks after Glenn Beck’s recent rally on the anniversary of Martin Luther King Jr.’s March on Washington. Mr. Stewart’s website notes they chose Oct. 30 as a date “of no significance whatsoever.”

Mr. Stewart and Mr. Colbert have filed a single application for a permit to host 25,000 people on the Washington Monument grounds, National Park Service spokesman Bill Line said Friday. It hasn’t been approved yet.

As for whether 25,000 people would actually show up, Mr. Line said he wouldn’t challenge the application from Mr. Stewart and Mr. Colbert.

“We have no reason in God’s green earth to think differently,” he said.

Mr. Stewart said Thursday night that his rally would be a “million moderate march.” He suggested a few signs for the rally, including “I disagree with you, but I’m pretty sure you’re not Hitler.”

“You may be asking yourself … but am I the right person to go to this rally?” Mr. Stewart said on his show. “The fact that you would even stop to ask yourself that question as opposed to just jumping up, grabbing the nearest stack of burnable holy books, strapping on a diaper and pointing your car towards D.C. — that means I think you just might be right for it.”

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