It’s almost pointless to note Rendell going off-message—it happens every time he opens his mouth. But this time, he’s essentially repeating
about all three candidates being pretty darned good. Here’s Rendell in the video:
John McCain is an exceptional person. I think we’ve got three exceptional people running for president. … Don’t be sad, be happy. This is a good field.
To be fair, Clinton critized Obama for saying McCain was "better than Bush," not for praising him. (She has had kind words for McCain in the past, too, but only to further emphasize Obama's impotence.) But Rendell isn't making her case any easier. In Democrat-land, McCain is Bush, period.
Update 5:20 p.m.: Forgot to mention two other instances of dangerous Rendellian honesty. Around the 1:30 mark, Rendell manages to praise both Gov. Deval Patrick and Ronald Reagan. Rendell says he believes Patrick's argument that "words can move people." Oops. Also, he thinks Reagan "was an effective president." Double oops! Of course, he's making the larger point that rhetoric isn't enough—you have to back it up with action. But as we've learned, context is no defense !