The Democratic Party has plenty of celebrities with cache to pull from, and it made a smart choice including actor Kal Penn on Tuesday's roster of speakers. Representing the young voter, a theme he hit on repeatedly, Penn gave a well-edited, humor-injected speech that even ended with a four-letter word: Vote.
"I've worked on a lot of fun movies, but my favorite job was having a boss who gave the order to take out Bin Laden, and who's cool with all of us getting gay married. So thank you, invisible man in the chair, for that," the Democratic volunteer and one-time White House liaison to young Americans said, referencing Clint Eastwood's speech at the RNC. That line, of course, played to laughter and applause.
Penn, in a dark suit and blue-and-white-striped tie -- Kumar cleaned up nicely -- folded in well with the "real people" peppered throughout the evening. He may be a wealthy celebrity, but he name-checked friends with concrete examples of how their lives are better thanks to President Obama. "My friend Matt got a job at a Detroit car company that still exists," Penn noted, adding that Lauren can afford her prescriptions, Josiah is back from Iraq, and on.
Representing the young voter, Penn of course had to reference Twitter, which he did by appealing to us to use #sexyface when discussing his speech online. (#DNC2012 will work too, kids.)
And who can argue with a message that asks young people to vote? "You don't even have to put pants on," Penn said, further directing the audience online.