November 6th, 2008
12:56 PM ET
5 years ago

Source: Emanuel to be chief of staff

Emanuel, left will be Obama's chief of staff.
Emanuel, left will be Obama's chief of staff.

(CNN) - Illinois Rep. Rahm Emanuel, a former Clinton administration aide, has accepted the position of President-elect Obama's chief of staff, a Democratic aide tells CNN.

Watch: Jessica Yellin reports on Emanuel

House Minority Leader John Boehner criticized the choice of Emanuel - the man known for his tough-minded approach and widely credited with engineering large congressional gains for Democrats in the 2006 elections.

“This is an ironic choice for a President-elect who has promised to change Washington, make politics more civil, and govern from the center," Boehner said in a statement.

Meanwhile, Jim Manley, a senior communications advisor to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, praised the choice.

"An excellent choice. Rahm knows the Hill," he told CNN. "And he knows the White House. He is a brilliant strategic thinker and someone who knows how to get things done."

Related: Emanuel would bring 'tough minded' approach


Filed under: Rahm Emanuel
soundoff (193 Responses)
  1. todd

    How funny. The Republicans had a two year smear campaign saying Barack was anti-Jew or anti-Israel, and then his first move is to pick an Israeli Jew as his chief of Staff.

    Gobama!

    November 6, 2008 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  2. Stacy from Loudoun County VA

    Rep. Rahm Emanuel is one of those guys that gets the job done. Is he a nice guy that is beloved by everyone? No, the GOP'ers hate him for good reason. To be honest, the Chief of Staff is a job where you are not going to get popularity points. You need someone that does not "give a rip" about being popular but takes the President's agenda and executes. Great pick in my estimation...

    Besides, his picks of Press Secretary and Chief of Staff are one thing, I am an Obama supporter that would like to see bipartisan pics at the Cabinet level.

    November 6, 2008 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  3. Jaye

    BREAKING NEWS....North Carolina votes are tabulated and the state goes to President-elect Obama!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    November 6, 2008 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  4. ANGIE

    I really Enjoy Watching the Republicans whine, cry, stomp their Feet after the last 8 years of a Horrible president and Political Hell the more the GOP WHINE the more I smile LOVING IT!!!!

    November 6, 2008 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  5. Joe The Engineer

    Citizen November 6th, 2008 1:22 pm ET

    Anybody saw Joe the Plumber?

    Yes, he is in training, license office refused to give him a license without knowing how to do the job.

    No, just kidding.

    November 6, 2008 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  6. FreeNLovIt

    Homosexual movements...

    As a Christian, I strongly oppose it. It is a sin and God is against it. If you understand the basic principle of God, you'll know it is wrong. God is HOLY and God is Light and God is Love!!

    Holy – We are forever separated from God because of our sins.
    Love – Only through Christ are we One with God and can appear in prayer, in front of his Throne to ask for favors
    Light – There is no darkness in Him... He is all Good

    November 6, 2008 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  7. CJG

    A great choice ....but would not expected less from a brilliant Pres Elect!
    Of course the GOP House Minority Leader John Boehner wants to rain on the parade...already so sad they have to start the criticizing when McCain asked for his supporters to rally together behind the new President Elect.

    November 6, 2008 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  8. Proud American

    As a woman i must state the OBVIOUS :)

    So far 3 very good looking men in the Obama administration! :)

    November 6, 2008 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  9. John Anderson

    I am a 100% Disabled Vietnam Veteran and have been fighting the Department of Veterans affairs for 25 years. I am also a staunch Republican that fought hard for John McCain. Now that Obama is the President elect I hope he keeps his promise to the Veterans of this country. I think the first thing he should do is announce that he will be keeping James Peake on as Secretary of veterans Affairs. General Peake has done more for the Veterans of this country in his short term than all of his predicessors others have done in the past 40 Years.

    November 6, 2008 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  10. Lee-- Dallas, TX

    President-Elect Obama is constructing a team that knows how to get things done in a no non-sense type of way. He knows that we are in tough times and the American people are looking for solutions.

    November 6, 2008 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  11. Chris

    wow... so much for nonpartisan politics... pick the former head of the DCCC, one of the most left-wing anti-bipartisan insiders around. Good change, good change. We now see what Obama was almost like, at least what most of the blind sheep couldn't.

    November 6, 2008 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  12. sf

    This comment is to Scott:

    Emanuel's selection is a foregone conclusion. Anyone closely following this race knew he was the guy Obama wanted for the job, and we certainly knew it before November 4th.

    If it bothers you that much, then why did you vote for Obama in the first place, or have you not been paying attention?

    November 6, 2008 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  13. ANGIE

    next choice HILLARY WATCH!

    November 6, 2008 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  14. Denver Dem

    Hoorah, Emanual is a fantastic choice. Smart, level headed, and knows what direction we need to take this country. Obama keep up with the excellent choices, and even the repugs will see you know what you are doing. Next lets bring Hagel and Luger into this cabinet.

    November 6, 2008 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  15. BM

    Why not pick someone who knows what they are doing?That doesn't mean that he has gone back on his word. He is in charge and will decide how Washinton is run! You people make me sick!

    November 6, 2008 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  16. DuncanM

    So the Messiah's first pick is someone called Emanuel?

    Is this pandering to the Evangelicals?

    November 6, 2008 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  17. FreeNLovIt

    In the Bible, the jews used to make sacrifices to God in the Temple. As a priest, if you are not holy enough, you will DROP dead in front of God.

    My friend is angry at God, but God cant help it if he is Holy. It's part of his attribute. It's what makes him God.

    It's like a skunk. What makes a skunk is his STINK.. Pepe La Pew is special becuase of his stink. It's what embodies his name.

    November 6, 2008 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  18. Iowa Mom4

    Oh how quickly they forget. I haven't forgotten Tom DeLay. I don't remember Boehner complaining about DeLay.

    November 6, 2008 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  19. ted

    Swell, his 1st choice is another Daley stooge who used city workers (paid overtime with taxpayer money) to win his congressional seat, who made 18 million dollars in only 2 years of influence peddling on Wall St. after leaving the Clinton administration. Bipartisanship? He's known as the pit-bull of the Dem. caucus and is widely disliked -even by people in his own party. Great choice Obama! I can't wait to see your cabinet picks.

    November 6, 2008 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  20. jn

    Bob,
    Please shut up and go away...If you can't make an honest statement or for that matter a FACT...then get off this site and move to Canada..I'm sure you can find something to complain about over there. Yoy are extremely rude and all of us would be better off not having to listen or read your BS...Goodbye!

    Congrats Obama on your 2nd great pick!! Great choice for a CHANGE!

    November 6, 2008 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  21. Beverly - Atlanta

    it's great to see President-elect Obama at work. WHAT A WONDERFUL WORLD.

    November 6, 2008 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  22. Helen

    Obama is NOT picking "Yes" men like his predecessor.

    Change really is coming to Washington!

    November 6, 2008 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  23. Conservatives Fight Back

    An open Letter to Obamamaniacs
    Hey, I dont hate Obama, in fact, I feel pretty good about him.
    BUT Be forewarned, we are going to give your president the same respect u gave ours. We will stifle, slander, undercut and disrespect him because we LEARNED FROM DEMOCRATS that it works. I have never seen a man so villified and pilloried as GW Bush. There wasnt even any debate on it. And it started from Day 1. We might not have the Media on our side as u did, but watch out Conservative r usually dignified but that has ended. EVEN IF IT HURTS our country, we will do it to show you how debilitating you have been to our country for the last 8 years. The Politics of divisiveness will continue., Now it is our turn. And it is to show u how bad it is. U reap what u sow. Get ready,.

    November 6, 2008 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  24. MEandYOU

    FIRST: Great choice! He is tough and sensable.

    SECOND: Didn't the Republicans learn ANYTHING from tuesday.....We want you to WORK TOGETHER, stop the absurdity and WORK TOGETHER!!!! THAT'S WHY YOU GOT KICKED OUT.

    November 6, 2008 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  25. FreeNLovIt

    Sure I have feelings and sympathy toward humans, but the Bible gives us all rules. WE are all govern by rules to make us complete.

    Even the UNiverse is governed by laws....

    November 6, 2008 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
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