Rahm Emanuel

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Rahm Emanuel (b. 1959) is a powerful Democrat who is Chief of Staff to President Obama.
Rahm Emanuel
He represented Illinois' 5th Congressional District in the House of Representatives 2003-2008. As chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, he took credit gaining a majority for the first time since 1994. He became a top leader as Chairman of the Democratic Caucus in the House. A member of a prominent Jewish family, Emanuel is an enthusiastic defender of Israel. He was blasted by leftists for his staunch support of the war in Iraq. He was neutral during the 2008 primaries, but when Obama was elected president he immediately appointed Emanuel Chief of Staff. Wearing many hats, Emaneuel took charge of planning, appointments and operations for the incoming Obama Administration.

Illustrating Emanuel's penchant for exploiting crises for political gain, he remarked, "A crisis is a terrible thing to waste; they are opportunities to do big things." [1][2]

In the White House Emanuel's aggressive demands for a stimulus package won passage of the liberals' $789 billion bill in February, but alienated Republicans (only three of whom voted for it). His seizure of control of the Census Bureau from the Commerce department led Senator Judd Gregg, a leading Republican, to reverse himself and reject the job of Secretary of Commerce. Emanuel released control of the census to head off complaints of political interference. Emanuel also ran roughshod over the Secretary of State, vetoing her choice for a senior aide.

Emanuel is the most powerful White House chief of staff in decades, as the principal author of Obama’s do-everything-at-once strategy. He will gain if the administration stabilizes the financial markets, achieves economic recovery, remakes the health care system and winds down the war in Iraq while successfully prosecuting the one in Afghanistan.

But if events turn sour--and as of mid August, 2009, Obama’s polls are falling, the health care legislation is under popular attack, the budget deficit is gigantic, and Afghanistan remains unstable--it is Emanuel whose job will be on the line as failures in moving left will force Obama to move to the right.[3]


Emanuel is the son of a prominent physician, Dr. Benjamin M. Emanuel; the father was born in Jerusalem. Emanuel has a bachelor's degree from Sarah Lawrence College (1981), and a master's degree in speech and communication from Northwestern University (1985). Emanuel and his wife Ann have three children.

He worked in the Bill Clinton White House from 1993-1998, first serving as Assistant to the President for Political Affairs, and then Senior Adviser to the President for Policy and Strategy. He was demoted at the behest of Hillary Clinton, who disliked his abrasive style. Leaving the White House staff, he became wealthy as an investment banker in Chicago, 1999-2002.

Emanuel was appointed to the board of scandal-plagued quasi-governmental mortgage giant Freddie Mac by President Clinton. [4][5] While Emanuel was on the board, Freddie Mac misreported its net income in 2000 by 30.5 percent, in 2001 by 23.9 percent and 2002 by 42.9 percent according to the SEC. Freddie Mac's failure is regarded as one of the precipitating events of the Financial Crisis of 2008.

Emanuel served in Congress 2002-2008 from the North Side of Chicago. Among Democrats in the House, he was squarely in the middle in his votes on social, economic and foreign policy issues. His aggressive in-your-face style alienated his opponents, but Emanuel took charge of the 2006 election for House Democrats, and secured major gains, giving the Democrats a majority for the first time since 1994, and propelling Emanuel to a top leadership role.

see also


  1. Rahm EmanuelYouTube- you never want a serious crisis video
  2. [1]
  3. Peter Baker and Jeff Zeleny, Emanuel Wields Power Freely, and Faces the Risks," New York Times Aug. 15, 2009
  4. http://online.wsj.com/article/SB122610420534009957.html
  5. Emanuel Was Director Of Freddie Mac During Scandal, ABC News, November 7, 2008.