Skip to comments.Kal Penn speaks to young voters at Marquette for Obama campaign
Posted on 09/18/2012 7:01:57 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet
When Kal Penn visited Marquette Saturday, he wasnt just stopping by on his way to White Castle.
Best known for his parts in the series House M.D. and the Harold and Kumar movies, Penn also stars for the White House under another role: associate director of public engagement. He spoke before a crowd of more than 100 in the Alumni Memorial Union.
I got a phone call in 2008 asking if I could serve in a much bigger way in youth outreach, Penn said. I am honored to serve my country. Im happy to do this. I thought it was a pretty incredible opportunity.
Penn acts as a liaison to the Asian-American and Pacific Islander communities, along with young voters, by speaking at rallies, universities and other public forums to support President Barack Obamas reelection. Penn rose to the position in 2009 after advocating for Obama in Iowa during his 2007 election campaign and serving on Obamas National Arts Policy Committee in 2008.
I had never done anything political before I campaigned for Obama, Penn said. I was really impressed by the president and what I saw while working on the campaign in Iowa. There was also a writer strike, so there was no stoner movie to be had that year.
Since accepting his political occupation, Penns acting career has been on hiatus. The actors move from Hollywood to Washington, D.C., led to the demise of his House M.D. character, Dr. Kutner, who was written out of the series in 2009 due to the actors new time commitment. At Marquette, he hardly referenced his acting and focused mostly on issues pertaining to the youth vote, such as the American Opportunity Tax Credit, which gave roughly 159,000 Wisconsin students a $2,100 tax credit on average toward tuition last year.
I moved to D.C. for two years, and thats when I got to see what the president was really like behind the scenes, Penn said. He is the exact same guy you see in front of the camera: incredibly smart, nice guy, very funny all of that stuff is true. But in particular, I was really amazed at how much he stood up for young people, and thats not something that I saw when I would turn on the TV. Whether its FOX or CNN or MSNBC or whatever it is, they tend to not cover stories that affect young people at all.
Penn highlighted a story he heard from a friend on the White Houses economic team about a negotiation between Speaker of the House of Representatives John Boehner and President Obama as an example.
Boehner said, If youre not willing to get rid of this tax credit that youve created, then its a non-starter were not going to negotiate on anything else. Penn said. So, the president stood up and he goes, OK well, I guess you guys get to explain to young Americans why you dont think that they should have a shot at a fair education unless theyre wealthy, and he walked out of the room. I thought that was incredibly badass.
Penns visit at Marquette caps his tour of Wisconsin universities, which also included stops at the University of Wisconsin campuses in Milwaukee, Whitewater, Madison, Oshkosh and Stevens Point. In addition to Wisconsin, Penn held student summits in 11 other swing states.
Marquettes Students for Barack Obama and its Deputy Team Leader Margaret Grace, a junior in the College of Arts & Sciences, had a mere three days to coordinate space in the Alumni Memorial Union and get the word out about Penns visit after hearing from a campaign organizer that Penn would stop to speak at Marquette.
It was a great speech. I got chills Im not going to lie, Grace said. Its so nice when there are personal stories, like his friend who had to choose between eyeglasses and textbooks and all of these things that have been made possible through the president that hes able to share that with us is pretty cool.
Among those attending Penns appearance at Marquette was Alec Richard, a junior in the College of Arts & Sciences, who wasnt there to simply be star struck.
I didnt really come here for (Penn), Richard said. I believe in Obama and I want to do whatever I can to help him get reelected.
Opportunies == OpportunITies
According to rumors, that title should not have an L anywhere in it.
Too bad any students who would care enough to show up are probably busy doing bong hits in their dorm rooms.
Dumbest. Indian. Evah
Maybe someone can explain to this ambulatory hemorrhoid that he is NOT “serving (his) country.”
White Castle after the bj?
I am honored to serve my country."
A Hollyweird celebrity rubbing elbows with the stinky little people to get them to vote for an America-hating Marxist is "serving" your country now? Wow! Yikes!
Kal Penn, on the left in the "Bush" shirt.
“a crowd of more than 100”
100! Wow! One of my band’s gigs would have been considered a complete failure with a “crowd of 100.”
I read somewhere this fag was odumbo’s new boytoy who replaced Reggie Love.
Kal Penn: “Whoa! Dude I am SOO Stoned right now it looks like this empty suit is talking to me”
Like, totally. All because of Our Big Toe. Soooo cool.
I remember when Bush called a meeting with a bunch of Hollywood executives. The Hollywood execs showed up, thinking that they were being called to do some really important things, like producing some patriotic films, perhaps.
So they all met, in whichever meeting room Bush had them meet in, and waited.
When Bush entered the room, and thanked them for coming, he made one request of them.
Bush asked them to try and release first run movies in a more timelier manner for the troops. Then he ended the meeting.
Aw, now you're just talkin'.
For a 35 year old man (old enough to be president of the United States) he sure sounds like a high school detention student.
Pretty funny actor though. His politics stink. Not sure why he would get involved in this stuff when he could be making another movie. I guess he is getting paid some for his work on the campaign but it probably isn’t more than his movies he gets paid to be in.
I love that story. Uh, what does it mean?
It’s an example of how Bush was much better at discerning value than Obama.
Obama has them campaigning for him and doing PSA’s.
Bush had them sending movies in a more timely manner.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.