As Democratic governor of a big state, as former chairman of the Democratic national committee and as a frequent talker on the Sunday morning TV news shows, Ed Rendell remains a national star in his party. Testament to that comes from his invitation to speak at the fall dinner meeting of the Iowa Democratic committee on Oct. 16. The state party released an email under Rendell's name that recently went to Democrats around Iowa seeking to drum up attendance. "Sarah Palin was able to get 1,300 people to show up at the Republican Party of Iowa’s dinner last month," he wrote. "I can do better than that at this year’s Jefferson Jackson Dinner. "While Palin has offered nothing but extreme rhetoric and a repackaging of failed Bush-era policies, Democrats have provided real leadership and our nation is better off because of it. As someone who has served at all levels of government I can spot a real leader when I see it and Sarah Palin is anything but that." Rendell's popularity may be higher out of state than in state. His Pa. poll numberds show him with a job-approval rating of about 35 percent.