Stephen Colbert is the AP Celebrity of the Year

Truthiness, Wikiality and Americone Dreams are just part of the essence of America’s favorite satirist, the man who borrows heavily from right-wing pundits and reinvents their own wheel.

Stephen Colbert of Comedy Central’s “The Colbert Report” exceeded the influence of his mocked pundits, orchestrating a Doritos-sponsored bid for presidency and topping the best-seller lists with his book “I Am America (And So Can You!).”

Colbert failed to get his Emmy Awards, even suffering a smarting loss to Barry Manilow.

However, Colbert was selected as AP Celebrity of the Year by newspaper editors and broadcast producers who said Colbert had the biggest impact on pop culture in 2007.

He finished above J.K. Rowling, and in third place was Al Gore, whose year included an Oscar, an Emmy, a Nobel Peace Prize and the global concert Live Earth.

Voting covered a swath of entertainers, including pop star Britney Spears, “Hannah Montana” star Miley Cyrus, rapper Kanye West, comedy director and producer Judd Apatow and country singer Kenny Chesney.

Colbert has declined interviews during the writers strike that has shuttered his show, but he told The Associated Press by e-mail:

“In receiving this award, I am pleased that I was chosen over two great spinners of fantasy — J.K. Rowling and Al Gore. It is truly an honor to be named the Associated Press’ Celebrity of the Year. Best of all, this makes me the official front-runner for next year’s Drug-Fueled Downward Spiral of the year. P.S. Look for my baby bump this spring!”

Colbert began his year by facing off against his “inspiration”, Bill O’Reilly.

In one afternoon, Colbert and “Papa Bear” traded guest appearances on each other’s shows in an exchange Colbert called “a meeting of the guts.”

In early 2007, Colbert became the namesake of the new Ben & Jerry’s ice cream flavor “Americone Dream.” This followed in a tradition of naming things after Colbert, like the mascot for the Saginaw Spirit, an Ontario Hockey League team, “Steagle Colbeagle the Eagle.”

Colbert’s promotion of his new book included appearances on news programs and even a guest column for The New York Times criticizing what candidates go through before officially declaring their candidacy.

Even Arkansas governor Republican Mike Huckabee, who made several appearances on “The Report,” now is considered a frontrunner for the GOP.

On his last episode of the year, Colbert said: “As you know, except for my 13 writers and production crew, I do this show single-handedly four nights a week. I’m also raising a family, promoting a book and, hey, two weeks ago I said, `Let’s run for president.’ I haven’t gotten a wink since I blacked out talking to Tim Russert.”

Note the date on this article may be incorrect due to importing it from our old system.