Rendell Takes Payton Over Party

Gov. Rendell knows a thing or two about running against his own party’s choice for an election and laughing about it later.

Rendell endorsed state Rep. Tony Payton Monday night, just moments after learning that the first-term legislator would once again have to run without the approval of Philadelphia’s Democratic Party.

“Which just goes to show you that the petty, personal politics of Philadelphia continues,” Payton said while introducing the governor in a reception on the 33rd floor of Center City’s Lowes Hotel.

Rendell praised Payton as a “breath of fresh air” in Harrisburg who arrived “not owing anything to anybody.”  The governor, who donated $5,000 to help Payton and urged the crowd to write checks, also took a few shots at the city’s Democratic big-wigs for freezing out Payton again.

“It is an absolute shame that Tony didn’t get the endorsement,” Rendell said. “But he did it the last time without the endorsement. I think he’s going to do it again.”