More Support for Hiring Gov. Ed Rendell

On Wednesday, I wrote that Pres. Obama should think about hiring outgoing Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell, in part, because of his ability to connect with white, working class white voters.  They make a larger chunk of the industrial midwest and will be key to Obama re-election campaign.

On Thursday, writing in the New Republic, Jonathan Cohn made the same recommendation:

Obama is having trouble with white, non-college educated voters, particularly in the industrial midwest. Whether that’s a function of the policy decisions Obama has made or the way Obama has explained them, [Ed] Rendell and [Tom] Strickland might be able to help. Both have proven track records of winning over precisely these sorts of voters in precisely that region. (Strickland came damn close to winning on Tuesday, despite the powerful Republican currents of the day. As my colleague Noam Scheiber observed, he did so with a brutally effective dose of populism.) I particularly like the idea of Rendell in the administration because he’s obstreperous. When he thinks the people around him are screwing up, he says so–loudly. That’s not exactly in line with the administration’s “no drama” motto but, right now, a little drama might be helpful.

Put Rendell in as Transportation Secretary and he will jump start one of the largest jobs programs we have seen since WWII and the New Deal.


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