Former Gov. Ed Rendell is close to a deal to be a contributor on MSNBC, Politico reports, after a wide-ranging interview with the never-camera-shy pol. He'll rejoin the Ballard Spahr lawfirm and supplement his income with paid speeches, as well as continue his work with nonprofits like Building America's Future (the infrastructure advocacy group he co-chairs with Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and Mayor Michael Bloomberg) and the American Academy of Nurses. Rendell also had some fun things to say about Sen. Bob Casey and Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton -- whom he supported vigorously in the Democratic presidential primary in '08:
But Rendell's love of politics means he'll certainly remain in the mix of Democratic politics and said he would consider getting back involved if Secretary of State Hillary Clinton were to run for president in 2016.
And while she's said publicly she won't run for president again, he made clear he'll encourage Clinton to rethink that statement.
"In 2016, she’ll be young in terms of energy, I think she’s performed brilliantly as Secretary of State. I don’t think there’s the slightest doubt that sh’ed be a terrific president. I think the time’s right for a woman president," he said. “If I make a lot of money, and Hillary tries to run in 2016, I may become a participate in the process."
Closer to home, Rendell predicted that Sen. Bob Casey would cruise to a second-term in 2012, run a half a million votes ahead of President Obama and said there was no Republican in the Keystone state who could defeat him.
“I think if anybody in politics can be considered unassailable it's Bob Casey. I think he’s the one politician in Pennsylvania who appeals to all parts of the political spectrum. He is conservative on many issues, progressive on many issues. Geographically the one area he was weak was in Philadelphia, but he’s done great work there and been a strong advocate," he said.
"Tom Corbett couldn't run against Bob Casey and give him a battle," Rendell added, referring to Pennsylvania's new Republican governor. "Had he chosen to run for governor this year, he would've blown away the field."
Rendell said "the most amazing" political feat he's ever pulled off in politics is defeating Casey in the 2000 Democratic primary for governor.
And in typical chest-thumping fashion, Rendell dared national Republicans to try to take out Casey.
“The Republicans shouldn’t spend a nickel in PA. If it’s a nickel it’s a nickel wasted," he quipped.