During his White House days Rahm got no endorsement from Michelle Obama.


It is no secret she didn’t like him much.

With $30 million in his campaign’s bank account but polling well shy of his needed 50% plus one to avoid a run-off, Rahm Emanuel has turned to his old boss, President Obama for a radio ad.

It will be surprising if First Lady Michelle Obama will be in it.

It is well documented that she doesn’t like The Mayor.

From a 2012 Tribune article:

Washington politics tends to require meticulous planning, but Emanuel appeared to be winging it — focusing on day-to-day concerns at the expense of the long-term, according to the book by New York Times reporter Jodi Kantor.

There was no set agenda during Emanuel’s 7:30 a.m. meetings for top staffers, according to Kantor, who wrote that, “it often seemed driven by what was in the newspaper that morning.”

“Even Emanuel’s allies admitted his style was scattered: ‘schizophrenia’ as one said. His philosophy was to put a ‘point on the board’ meaning some small advance or victory, each day, to eventually win the match,” Kantor writes.

The book’s portrayal of Emanuel stands in contrast to the controlled and calibrated image he has tried to project in his opening months as mayor.

Emanuel is not the focus of “The Obamas,” a book about the first couple’s first years in the White House, but he plays an significant supporting role.

On paper, everyone in the West Wing reported to Emanuel, who reported to the president. In reality, Kantor writes, there were several power centers competing for access and influence, including Emanuel,Vice President Joe Biden, and senior advisers David Axelrod and Valerie Jarrett.

After the midterm elections in 2010, it was clear Obama “needed a more traditional structure, with a streamlined decision-making process flowing through a chief of staff who had true authority,” according to the book.

One of Obama’s first major decisions was tapping Emanuel as chief of staff. Unlike his boss, Emanuel was combative, unafraid to push or even insult, Kantor writes.

“Emanuel was restless, sly, casually abusive, and almost always willing to cut a deal,” according to the book. “He could yell at you and eat a brownie off your plate at the same time.”

Emanuel, however, had learned lessons during his time in President Bill Clinton’s White House: “Avoid symbolic issues and ideological battles.” Hillary Clinton also taught him another one: “Stay out of the first lady’s way.”

Emanuel did not always appear to heed that when it came to Michelle Obama. There were occasions when he’d make a commitment on the first lady’s behalf without consulting her first.

The first lady also had her doubts about Emanuel. The two were philosophical and temperamental contrasts who had almost no bond, Kantor writes, and their relationship was “distant and awkward from the beginning.”

2 thoughts on “During his White House days Rahm got no endorsement from Michelle Obama.

  1. So, the American Public School-destroyer-in-chief, architect of “Race to the Top” and the test-frenzied robotic educational climate has endorsed the Chicago Public School-destroyer-in-cheif. How apropos.

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