Emanuel narcissistic, opponents tell court
January 25th, 2011
12:52 PM ET
12 years ago

Emanuel narcissistic, opponents tell court

Washington (CNN) - Rahm Emanuel is narcissistic and flippant, according to the lawyers opposing the former White House chief of staff's request for injunctive relief from the city's plan to print ballots without his name on it.

"The petitioner narcissistically asks this court to value his non fundamental right to be a candidate for mayor over the fundamental voting rights of potentially thousands of voters," writes attorney Burton Odelson in a brief opposing Emanuel's effort to have the ballot's include his name regardless of the ultimate outcome regarding his eligibility to be a candidate.

In a request to the Illinois Supreme Court Monday night, Emanuel attorney Michael Kasper wrote, "No harm would result if Emanuel remains on the ballot while this court considers the merits of his position. If the ruling is upheld, he said, votes for Emanuel "simply would not be counted."

But Odelson argues the actual effect could lead to disenfranchisement should Emanuel ultimately be deemed ineligible because many voters may not be aware of the court ruling and vote for the former Obama aide anyway.

"The petitioners flippant attitude to the disenfranchisement of potentially thousands of voters is disingenuous," wrote Odelson.

After the Illinois appeals court's decision Monday that held Emanuel is not an eligible candidate, the board of elections went ahead with its ballot order - without Emanuel's name - because officials say they need to start planning.

"We are at a point...we have to begin the process of preparing for the election," Election Board Chairman Langdon Neal told reporters on a conference call. "Our time is getting smaller and smaller."

Board officials say they have never waited this long before an election to place a ballot order.

The election is scheduled for Feb. 22nd.

Besides Emanuel there are three other major candidates running for the position. Emanuel had been the clear frontrunner.

- CNN's Jessica Yellin and Alexander Mooney contributed to this report

Filed under: Chicago mayoral race • Rahm Emanuel
soundoff (33 Responses)
  1. Dennis

    Boy, that's a surprise. I'm sure he picked a little of that up from his buddy in the White House. Nothing like learning from the master.

    January 25, 2011 12:58 pm at 12:58 pm |
  2. Protect and Defend Freedom of Speech in the USA

    Leave him off the ballot. If it is decided he can run later, he can run a write-in campaign like Murkowski did. Leaving his name on the ballot is definitely the wrong thing to do as uninformed people (you know, all those dead voters) will end up wasting their vote on him.

    January 25, 2011 01:00 pm at 1:00 pm |
  3. T'sah from Virginia

    Oh well – another WRITE-IN WINNER!!!! If the PEOPLE want RAHM – the people with HAVE Rahm and it is really all about the PEOPLE!!!

    Those lawyers on the other side sound like RepubliCAN'Ts – the name-calling fits and this is their way of eliminating someone from the electoral that will HELP Democrats in 2012!!!!

    January 25, 2011 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  4. Dave, Central Illinois

    Sit back and enjoy the meltdown. Chicago Dem's chickens have come home to roost....

    January 25, 2011 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  5. Erik S.

    Can't beat him, then cheat him.

    January 25, 2011 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  6. November 2010

    If this man gets the gig, Chicago gets what it deserves.

    January 25, 2011 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  7. marcamp2

    Bet this is the first time in his life somebody said no to this arrogant man....it will be interesting to see how this all plays out...considering his opponents, it would seem Chicago is back to same ol, same ol politics! Those poor voters don't stand a chance of anyone that's not connected to a liberal machine!

    January 25, 2011 01:08 pm at 1:08 pm |
  8. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    How is this true? He has always said that he wanted to run. If it weren't for the job, he'd still be living full time in Chicago. There was always the intent to be there if he wasn't 100% of the time. Could he have run if he were still in the House?

    January 25, 2011 01:10 pm at 1:10 pm |
  9. Rickster

    "Rahm Emanuel is narcissistic and flippant"............sounds like his former boss.

    January 25, 2011 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
  10. CaveAdsum

    When I die I want to be buried in Chicago so I can remain politically active.

    January 25, 2011 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  11. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    According to right wingnuts: a person who works in Washington DC, and pays his taxes in Illinois, votes in Illinois, and has a valid Illinois drivers license, cannot run for mayor of the city he lives in. That means no republican, no bagger, or no birther who works in Washington DC, can vote in their home state, let alone be on the ballot.

    January 25, 2011 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  12. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA - John "The Weeper of the House" Boehner

    Mr. odelson, if you're so concerned about the disenfranchisement of voters, then maybe you should drop your case and give it a rest a already. Everyone knows Rahm is a Chicagoan.

    January 25, 2011 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  13. Former Republican - Now Independent

    If elected, Rahm Emanuel would make a very poor mayor of Chicago. But he would be far better than any other current Democratic candidates, especially Carol Mosely Braun. God forbid she would run Chicago like one of her failed businesses.

    Where are the GOP candidates?

    January 25, 2011 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  14. Sniffit

    "The petitioner narcissistically asks this court to value his non fundamental right to be a candidate for mayor over the fundamental voting rights of potentially thousands of voters,"

    Being an attorney myself, I'm a little suprised that an attorney (especially one who is no doubt getting the big bucks) would levy a personal attack on the opposing party in that manner...it's generally not considered appropriate or professional. There are far more clever ways to insinuate things like that or make those points without engaging in blatant name calling.

    More to the point, that entire quote is irrelevant to the issue before the court AND ignores that Emmanuel leads every other potential candidate in the polls by an insanely wide margin. The reality is, the Chicago Board of Elections doesn't really have to start printing he ballots yet....a couple million ballots can be churned out by a printing press and then distributed to the polling centers all within a few days. They're trying to seal the deal before the issue makes its way through the court and thereby turn him into a write-in candidate (which he'd probably still win) if he prevails on appeal.

    January 25, 2011 01:24 pm at 1:24 pm |
  15. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Narcissistic and flippant is what they have against Rahm? That criteria alone would keep 99% of all political candidates off the ballot.

    January 25, 2011 01:26 pm at 1:26 pm |
  16. jerry

    the fix is in...the law means nothing to this chicago crowd...I really feel for Chicago and the country.

    January 25, 2011 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |

    I know these are the Rules and have been for some time however, Why can't any American represent any state they choose to. If I live in WA state and feel I can better serve the people of another state and want to why shouldn't I be allowed. That would be like not allowing a Firefigher, Police Office, Teacher , Nurse not being allowed to move and take their talents to another state and be denied because they have not lived there long enough.

    January 25, 2011 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  18. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    People would have wrote Rham's name in and the other candidates wouldn't have required votes between them to win the election. Rham pays taxes in the State of Illinois and votes in the State as do our military men and women while serving abroad.

    January 25, 2011 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
  19. JSun

    Now I'm no huge fan of Rahm Emanuel, but the guy was in our nation's capital serving the President of the United States. Of course he's not going to be based in Chicago. But he is clearly a Chicagoan and deserves the right to run for Mayor. Burton Odelson is anything but professional for starting this namecalling.

    January 25, 2011 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  20. Henry

    Oh, here we go with the name calling. Childish!!

    January 25, 2011 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  21. willie floyd

    If a person enters the military and is required to leave his home, can he not return to it? Do property taxes not have to be paid during their absence? No fan of Emanuel, but fair is fair.

    January 25, 2011 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  22. Adam Diran

    What does Emanuel's personality have to do with his right to run for the office? Isn't that statement asking the court to make its decision based on political considerations rather than the law?

    January 25, 2011 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  23. wayfarer

    What? Again? I was starting to feel the independence of the judiciary.

    January 25, 2011 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  24. Rev Mike

    He votes there, he pays taxes there! Win by any means takes on new meaning! Have you told the guys in the service they are not allowed to run for office when they get out?

    January 25, 2011 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
  25. Me

    "The petitioner narcissistically asks this court to value his non fundamental right to be a candidate for mayor over the fundamental voting rights of potentially thousands of voters"

    Really? How?

    "The petitioners flippant attitude to the disenfranchisement of potentially thousands of voters is disingenuous," wrote Odelson.

    Really? How is having his name on the ballot going to disenfranchise thousands of voters?

    That dog don't hunt.

    January 25, 2011 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
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