After Starring In an Insulting Campaign Video, Kal Penn Lies About Obama's Pot Record

Actor Kal Penn and President Barack Obama were both raked over the coals yesterday for their collaboration on a campaign video teasing Penn's upcoming appearance at the Democratic National Convention. In that video, Penn reprised his role as Kumar from the Harold and Kumar movies, and takes a phone call from Obama while stoned, watching cartoons, and eating junkfood. The subtle implication is that marijuana users are easily swayed, lazy idiots. 

Reason, the Marijuana Policy Project, LEAP, and several others criticized Penn and Obama for the video, as Obama has utterly failed to live up to his promise to deprioritze federal prosections of medical marijuana.

In an interview with Chris Moody of Yahoo! News, Penn said

"I think that the president's been pretty consistent with that. He's not in favor of legalization, we should be open about something like that. But what the president has done is take a really smart look at the Department of Justice and said, given the fact that the federal government has limited resources, we should be allocating them toward violent criminals and not towards non-violent criminals. We can see that not just in things like marijuana but in things like immigration reform where he's going after and deporting violent criminals and making sure that if you're a Dream Act eligible student that you know that you can apply for your deferred status. Wherever the federal government has an appropriate role, I think the president's been very consistent in that. That's something that I think folks should know." 

Penn is very, very wrong about Obama "allocating" Department of Justice resources toward "violent criminals." Here's Jacob Sullum on the frequency of DEA raids in the beginning of Obama's presidency

Americans for Safe Access counts at least 41 raids on growers or dispensaries between Obama’s inauguration and the Ogden memo, almost five a month on average. As of late May, there had been at least 106 raids since the Ogden memo, nearly six a month. In fact, medical marijuana raids have been more frequent under Obama than under Bush, when there were about 200 over eight years.

In October of 2011, CBS reported that the Obama administration had given every medical marijuana dispensary in California 45 days to close, "or face criminal charges and confiscation of their property even if they are operating legally under the state’s 15-year-old medical marijuana law." 

Alas, it appears Penn only said the above because he was told to. When asked by Moody if federal marijuana laws were "appropriate," Penn said, "I'm not a marijuana expert. That's a weird question."

Not an expert, but definitely a stooge. 

Here's the video: 

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  • Tim||

    "Actor and Obama butt-boy Kal Penn"

  • Drake||

    He doesn't just play an idiot on TV.

  • JW||

    He's redefining lickspittle.

  • VG Zaytsev||

    I'm an expert on douchebags and Kal Penn definitely is one.

  • Pro Libertate||

    Politics aside, I didn't like his character on House. Then again, I preferred the original staff all along.

  • ant1sthenes||

    I didn't like him on House. Specifically, I didn't like him derailing a fucking season with a completely senseless character elimination just because Kal Penn decided to simply walk into Mordor.

  • ||

    What a fucking moron. Where's my blood pressure medication?

  • Pro Libertate||

    The president has been consistent in nothing except making mistakes. He's consistent in that. He's been very consistent in that.

  • Hugh Akston||

    Look, it may be true that President Obama completely lied about prioritizing marijuana busts, especially medical dispensaries that are complying with state laws. And his administration has ruined tens of thousands of lives for doing something that he was photographed doing in the 70s and still got off scot free. And sure he treats people who question the needlessly brutal and thoughtless policies his Administration continues to enforce like stupid children who shouldn't be taken seriously.

    But c'mon. Vote for him anyway, because you know in your heart that Mitt Romney would be 1000x worse. Somehow.

  • Paul.||

    It's only been four years, Hugh. He can't change the world in four years. His administration needs a minimum of 12.

    Biden 2016!

  • Hugh Akston||

    I made a comment not too long ago about how Obama has failed on so many fronts because he has to worry about reelection, and the mean ol' republicans keep saying nasty things that threaten that chance.

    So the obvious solution is to declare him President For Life. Once he is no longer held accountable for his actions, he'll be able to really Change this country.

    PS: the search function on the new site doesn't search comments. Lame.

  • Paul.||

    PS: the search function on the new site doesn't search comments. Lame.

    It's ok, Homeland Security searches them so I think we're all good.

  • SIV||

    Dogs on the roof.

  • Paul.||

    Oh, I got to hear from all my Democrat friends how great Michele Obama was with her speech.

    I'm guessing it was super-inspiring. Like all things Obama, just ignore the deeds after the fact.

    Too bad she represents the most loathsome arbeit-macht-frei (yeah, I went there) aspects of the Democratic party.

    She and her little army of food Nazis can get stuffed.

  • Raston Bot||

    words are wind* is my kneejerk retort to all the "he's so inspiring" zombies.


  • ||

  • The Hammer||

    Did she really call herself the "Mom-in-chief?"

  • Paul.||

    I like the little ad above this post I'm getting:


    Uhm, yeah. Help the agency with police, legislative powers and an unlimited budget fight back.

    God I'm so sick of this election. Can't we just get back to our regularly scheduled presidential incompetence?

  • Brett L||

    "Here's the deal folks, if you do a commercial, you're no longer an artist, you're a whore." (Unless the IRS is fucking you in the ass like they did Willie Nelson.)

    --Bill Hicks

  • John Thacker||

    Mighty insulting thing to say about Hank Williams (Sr., of course.)

  • Brett L||

    Anyone who got himself kicked out of the Opry is okay in my book, but Bill had high standards.

  • Apple||

    "Fuck Bill Hicks."

    -Artists who don't like starving

  • SKR||


  • Paul.||

    It would also be super-swell if Hit Run would keep me logged in for more than one post.

  • Paul.||

    Is it just my browser or has the entire Reason site gone mammaries north?

  • ||

    Having the same problem off and on today no matter what browser I use. Didn't have this problem last week.

  • JW||

    HundR has tits?

  • Hugh Akston||

    Well, it only has sideboobs.

  • JW||

  • Pro Libertate||

    Two dollars!

  • Paul.||

    Instead of scrutiny, the usual arguments in favor of another Obama presidency are made: We must stop fanatics; it would be better than the fanatics—he's the last line of defense from the corporate barbarians—and of course the Supreme Court. It all makes a terrible kind of sense and I agree completely with Garry Wills who described the Republican primaries as " a revolting combination of con men fanatics— "the current primary race has become a demonstration that the Republican party does not deserve serious consideration for public office."

    If Mitt Romney is a "fanatic", this country deserves neither hope nor change.

  • Pro Libertate||

    That's just why they're sure to lose. Not only is Obama obviously incompetent and dangerous, the opponent is milquetoast in the eyes of most voters. Mostly harmless and maybe slightly better on economics.

  • John||

    You have to be pretty far gone to find Romney a fanatic. If only.

  • JW||

    His fanaticism is the dangerous kind, which is completely different from our fanaticism!

  • ||

    Tell that to the hordes of lefties that won't shut up about how Romney/the current crop of Republicans are THE MOST EXTREME CONSERVATIVES EVER blah blah blah. (This is usually goes hand-in-hand with calling Obama a "moderate conservative", because he hasn't nationalized the entire economy yet, or something.)

    Wake me up when eliminating the welfare state is a Republican party plank endorsed by the President/Presidential candidate.

  • Brett L||

    Kickboxing. Sport of the future.

  • ||

    Whoa, that was actually quite refreshing to read.

    CUSACK: I hate to speak too much to motivation, but why do you think MSNBC and other so-called centrist or left outlets won't bring up any of these things? These issues were broadcast and reported on nightly when John Ashcroft and Alberto Gonzalez and Bush were in office.

    TURLEY: Well, there is no question that some at MSNBC have backed away from these issues, although occasionally you'll see people talk about –

    CUSACK: I think that's being kind, don't you? More like "abandoned."

    Cusack's cocktail party invitations might see a bit of a dip after this.

  • JW||

    Cusack's cocktail party invitations might see a bit of a dip after this.

    Yeah, I was thinking along the same lines. His role offers aren't going to be as plentiful, after questioning the orthodoxy.

  • Pro Libertate||

    He went out of his way to do a buddy-pic with Hitler. True story!

  • Paul.||

    Under Obama do we continue to call the thousands of mercenaries in Afghanistan "general contractors" now that Bush is gone? No, we don't talk about them... not a story anymore.

    That sound you hear is John Cusack being scratched off hundreds of Christmas lists.

  • Fatty Bolger||

    I enjoyed how they totally shit on his character on House when he decided to quit the show to work for Obama. The producers probably voted for Obama, but an actor leaving a hit show just to shill for a politician? Must have rubbed the wrong way.

    Of course they denied it was deliberate. Just like the guys on GoT who used Bush for a decapitated head.

  • Loki||

    Lefty Hollyweird celbu-tard is stupid. Also, sky is blue. Film at eleven.

  • Jeff||

    Maybe he's not lying. Maybe he's just stupid and oblivious.

  • ObeyTheFist||

    Link to CBS goes to ESPN weight lifting schedule.

  • box_man||

    Kal is under the influence of the devastating substances that are 100% addictive and far more powerful than any drug currently outlawed - power and money. Of course he will say anything he's told to, he needs his next fix worse than he needs his own soul.

  • Mickey Rat||

    "The subtle implication is that marijuana users are easily swayed, lazy idiots."

    It is not as if that is well-established trope about people who regularly partake, upon which several movie franchises have been based on.

  • loving||

  • loving||

  • nevster||

    Hi there, I read your blog on a regular basis. Your story-telling style is witty, keep it up!

  • nevster||

    it's really a nice for me to pay a visit this web site, it includes important Information.


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