By NCC Staff
National Constitution Center/Constitution Daily
April 6, 2012

Today at the National Constitution Center, former Governors Ed Rendell and Christine Todd Whitman offered contrasting perspectives and firsthand knowledge of Election 2012′s key players and issues. David Eisner, president and CEO of the National Constitution Center, moderated.

Here are some excerpts from the program. Click the play button to hear each quote in its entirety.

GOP’s mistakes

Rendell: “The Republicans have done everything they could to screw this up for themselves. It’s been a clown show.”

Whitman agreed that the Republican leaders’ performance has been “shameful.”

Obama’s, Romney’s leadership

Whitman, on President Obama: “Well, he can’t run on hope and change.”

Rendell, on Romney: He should have showed leadership–and gained the respect of voters–by standing up when the crowd booed a gay soldier.

Whitman: War on Women

Whitman: “There are a whole lot of Republicans I would take out in a nanosecond because of the way they’ve talked about women.”

Santorum in PA

Rendell offered Rick Santorum some simple advice for the Pennsylvania primary: “Get out.”

He admitted it’s tempting to try to stay the course: “When you’re there, the limelight is intoxicating. It’s like heroin.”
Voter turnout

Both Whitman and Rendell agreed a key to addressing the partisan gridlock in Washington is for citizens to get out and vote.

Whitman said: “A 10 percent voter turnout in a primary is just wrong, and it keeps us in this cycle of extremes. If you want to know what the problem is, look in the mirror.”

Rendell agreed: “There’s only one remedy for Citizens United, and that’s a 70 to 80 percent turnout. That blows away Citizens United, that blows away lobbyists, that blows away the negative campaign ads.”

Holly Munson is the Programs Coordinator at the National Constitution Center.