Dave Chappelle campaigns for Maryland Dem governor candidate

Comedian Dave Chappelle traveled to Maryland on Friday to campaign for one of several Democrats in the state's June Democratic primary for governor.

The "Chapelle's Show" star spoke Friday on behalf of Ben Jealous, a longtime friend and former NAACP president who currently leads a small pack of Democratic candidates in the primary race for the nomination to take on Gov. Larry Hogan (R) in November.


"So you know, I'm out of my element," Chappelle said at an event at Olde Towne Inn in Largo, Maryland, according to NPR. "You know politics has never been my thing."

"I think as a leader, as an organizer ... this man is excellent. I wouldn't lie to you; I'd stake my whole reputation on it," Chappelle added.

The stand-up comedian made headlines in 2005 when he walked away from a reported $50 million contract with Comedy Central for his hit sketch-comedy show. Chapelle, instead, chose to enter semi-retirement for nearly a decade.

Chappelle told the crowd Friday that Jealous was the first person to call him after he turned down the comedy network.

"I really attribute it to being here now," Chappelle said, adding Jealous and fellow civil rights worker Dick Gregory gave the comedian "the best pep talk from the two of them that I've ever gotten in my life."

Jealous leads his closest challenger, top Prince George's County official Rushern Baker, by about 5 points (21 percent to 16 percent) in the latest Washington Post/University of Maryland poll.

Baker has garnered support from some of the state's political establishment, including former Gov. Martin O'Malley (D), who endorsed Baker this week.