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'Harold and Kumar' duo campaign for Clinton at UNC

Kal Penn (left) and John Cho (right), the comedy duo from the Harold and Kumar movie series, visited UNC Tuesday to encourage early voting.
Kal Penn (left) and John Cho (right), the comedy duo from the Harold and Kumar movie series, visited UNC Tuesday to encourage early voting.

“I texted (Penn) after the first debate and was very, very stressed out, and said we need to go somewhere,” he said.

But this retelling is a mild version of the profanity-laden text Cho actually sent, joked Penn. Penn is also a former associate director for the Office of Public Engagement in the Obama White House.

The duo appeared on the steps of Wilson Library Tuesday to discuss the importance of millennial votes in an event for Democratic nominee for president Hillary Clinton.

Penn and Cho also visited N.C. State University and Wake Forest University while in North Carolina.

They both showed off their comedic skills throughout the event.

“I am Chris Pine,” Cho said, introducing himself to the crowd.

“I’m Matthew McConaughey,” Penn said.

Cho said his status as an immigrant affects his outlook on the election.

“I’m an immigrant, and I’m looking to preserve the idea of an America that I believe in,” he said to the crowd.

Mackensie Kvalvik, a UNC senior and Clinton campaign volunteer, said celebrities on campus may help mobilize voters who would otherwise not be as excited.

“I think more people will show up for Harold and Kumar than maybe, like, Chelsea Clinton,” she said.

Cho and Penn said it’s important for millennials to turn out for early voting.

Penn said during the 2008 election, the number of young voters who registered and came out to vote for then-Sen. Barack Obama helped win him the state.

“Young voters could literally decide the fate of the election,” he said in an interview after the event. “And the stakes are very high in terms of college affordability, marriage equality and job creation.”

The pair discussed college affordability and Penn said, as a former surrogate for Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., he appreciated Clinton’s adoption of Sanders’ college affordability plan.

“I mean, that’s exactly what a primary is designed for,” he said after the event. “To share ideas between people who are running against each other.”

Cho said millennials are invested in the election and understand its stakes.

“We were talking in the car about kind of a BS storyline it is that millennials don’t care and that they’re not involved and that they’re apathetic,” he said.

“Harold & Kumar” is a stoner comedy, but Penn did not acknowledge a connection between the pair’s visit and Clinton’s views on marijuana.

“I think it’s a suggestion of Clinton’s views towards friendship, which is the underlying theme of the movie,” he said.

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