Ed Rendell is too truthful to be a good vice-presidential candidate. Just ask him. The Pennsylvania governor and Hillary supporter was a guest on this afternoon's Hardball. Wrapping up the interview, host Chris Matthews broached his availability as Veep.
CHRIS MATTHEWS: Do you think the Democrats have a shot at carrying Florida on the best of conditions this year?
ED RENDELL: Oh, absolutely, absolutely. Particularly when the issues about Social Security are fashioned. I think this is going to be the best chance we've had to carry Florida since 2000.
MATTHEWS: I think Hillary has a better chance than Barack in Florida.
RENDELL: No question.
MATTHEWS: But I think Barack has a better chance if you're his running mate. Would you be available, Governor, to be a running-mate with Barack Obama--
RENDELL: No --
MATTHEWS: or Hillary Clinton?
RENDELL: I said I'm going to finish my term here. And who in their right mind would want someone like me to be their running mate? You know, if they came up and said what do you think about the presidential candidate's environmental policy that he released today, I'd say "fair, you know, fair." You know, I have this, this problem of telling the truth all the time.
The Hardball host closed with some downy-soft schmoozing.
MATTHEWS: Well, I think you'd carry Pennsylvania and save it for the Democrats, because it is a little bit precarious with John McCain running. And I think you'd bring back in, you'd bring Ohio in. And I think you'd make Hillary, you'd make Barack competitive in Florida. I think you'd be a great running-mate. I understand the situation at home and your responsibilities to the Commonwealth. Anyway, I'm here to build you up [interesting conception of his role], because I do think you're the best pol around. Hey, thank you Governor, you're running a hell of a campaign for Hillary Clinton. If she doesn't win by 10 points, it's not your fault.
I'll let others judge whether Rendell suffers from a truthfulness surfeit. One thing is obvious: he's not hampered by humbleness.