May 18, 2016

Rendell apologizes for 'ugly women' comment

Former governor said Trump's rhetoric regarding opposite sex would hurt election chances

Politics Women
Ed Rendell Matt Rourke/AP Photo

Former Gov. Ed Rendell.

In trying to reassure Pennsylvania Democrats that presumptive GOP nominee Donald Trump's comments about women would hurt him in the state, Ed Rendell had a, shall we say, "interesting" quote about women himself — a comment he has since apologized for.

The Washington Post published a story Wednesday about Trump's strong performance in the suburbs of Pennsylvania, particularly the Philly 'burbs, in the state's April primary. The article makes note of Pennsylvania's potential significance in the general election, a topic that's gained traction as of late despite a Republican not winning the commonwealth since 1988.

Stirring up the conversation was a recent poll that found Trump and Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton nearly tied in the state.

Rendell, a former Philly mayor and Pennsylvania governor, is quoted in the article as saying any appeal Trump has will be offset by his controversial comments about the opposite sex. Here's his explanation (h/t PhillyMag):

“Will he have some appeal to working-class Dems in Levittown or Bristol? Sure,” said Ed Rendell, the former Pennsylvania governor and Philadelphia mayor, who won landslides in the suburbs. “For every one he’ll lose 1½ , two Republican women. Trump’s comments like ‘You can’t be a 10 if you’re flat-chested,’ that’ll come back to haunt him. There are probably more ugly women in America than attractive women. People take that stuff personally.”

"Ugly women" isn't the first notable sound bite from Rendell this election. A Hillary Clinton supporter, Rendell warned that Bernie Sanders supporters ought to "behave" at the convention in Philly this summer, stirring up a backlash from some backing the Vermont senator.

Rendell later told The Associated Press the comments were "incredibly dumb and selfish" and that he's sorry. He said he was poking fun at his own appearance and trying to make the point that "there's more of us then there are of them."