Rahm Emanuel predicts uphill climb for Obama re-election
October 9th, 2011
04:19 PM ET
10 years ago

Rahm Emanuel predicts uphill climb for Obama re-election

(CNN) – Rahm Emanuel left his post as White House Chief of Staff more than a year ago, but on Sunday the Chicago mayor waded back into presidential politics, saying his former boss’ reelection was far from a sure thing.

“There's no doubt there's a challenge politically because the economy is not where the American middle-class family needs it to be for their bottom line,” Emanuel said on NBC’s “Meet the Press.”

Emanuel said the American people would hold President Barack Obama and other elected officials accountable for the faltering economy when they cast their votes in 2012.

“Everybody in public life, everybody in corporate life, is accountable for that result,” Emanuel said. “And corporate life, you deal with it, if you're a public company with stockholders. For the president of the United States, for members of Congress, also as you know, their ratings are low. They're facing challenges. You're accountable to try to get the results so the middle class can achieve the middle class gains.”

The Chicago mayor said despite the uphill battle, Obama is still making decisions with the goal of long-term success, rather than immediate political gain.

“I often advised the president about doing the quick, political thing, and he looked at the long-term,” Emanuel said. “And he rejected the quick, and political. Because it wasn't in America's interest. That's true of both financial reform, health care, the bigger decision. And he's never lost his fight for America. And he did make decisions that were in the long-term interest.”

Emanuel took square aim at the current GOP frontrunner Mitt Romney, predicting economic catastrophe should the former Massachusetts governor be elected president.

“There would not be an auto industry if Mitt Romney was president,” Emanuel said. “He would have said, let it go bankrupt.”

Filed under: 2012 • President Obama • Rahm Emanuel
soundoff (42 Responses)
  1. Chipster

    Cain plans to protect the wealthy from paying for Capital Gains (profits), investment earnings (profits), and from increasing their income tax to at least the same percentage as the middle class. Furthermore, his idea to collect government revenue is to create a consumer sales tax on purchases. Sales taxes always hit the poor and middle class the hardest because a higher percentage of their income must be spent on necessities – rent, groceries,fuel.... while the wealthy earned far more, they're percent of the tax burden is far less under Cain's plan. It's great that they earn more but why shouldn't they pay taxes on their income whether it's from investments, sales of property or any other source?

    October 9, 2011 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  2. Rudy NYC

    Why wasn't it class warfare when the Republicans demagogued unions and public workers earlier this year? Why is it when those people fight back, all of sudden it is class warfare?

    October 9, 2011 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  3. cigarman

    As I have stated before, I am a Republican who is going to vote for Obama again.Bailing out of the auto industry was a huge mistake on Obamas part. A president cant possibly be as smart as us arm chair quarterbacks. Our banking industry should not have been bailed out either, Obama should have let them eat cake. Our Republican field of candidates are so pitiful, I suppose that we will just have to suffer through another four years of prosperity instead of going to war with Iran. DAMN

    October 9, 2011 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
  4. 1crusader

    The president's numbers might not be great, but America has to look at the alternative.Whether Romney, Perry, Cain, or any other GOP candidate parroting the same ideas, their Hands-off, do-nothing approach isn't the answer.When the financial meltdown initially occurred, that was their solution then; it's their solution now; and it will be their solution , if elected, allowing things to get worse.The middle class, seniors, and the disadvantaged will bear the brunt of their policies, with no one to lobby Washington for them.Mitt Romney has been on every side of every issue.One minute he was for helping the auto industry recover, then he was against it.The same with immigration, abortion, and almost every other issue.I don't call that strong, decisive leadership .The president has made some tough calls that were unpopular at the time, but turned out to be the right decision.I'll trust his judgment any day over that.

    October 9, 2011 04:48 pm at 4:48 pm |
  5. S.positive

    President Obama will still win re-election in 2012 because the alternative is weak...

    October 9, 2011 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  6. Four and The Door

    Obama's "fixes", even funded to the tune of $5 trillion of financed by new American debt fixed nothing. Of course he didn't start the financial problems, but when he spent us so far into debt that America's debt rating was downgraded, it's game over for Barry as soon as Americans get the opportunity to vote him out of Washington. Everyone knows that except the suckers still fooled into donating for his 2012 campaign.

    October 9, 2011 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  7. Martha in CF

    Surely the American people are stupid enough to think that this was the Obama's administration fault what state our economy is in. He has worked relentlessly to try to correct our economy. It is the republicans and the tea party who has prohibited this country from moving forward all because they are determined that Obama is a one term president. I think it is the American people who need to wake up(I applaud what is happening with the protests on Wall St) and see what is happening in the U S and start getting involved.
    For the states who now need photo ID's we need to rally and get photo ID's for those who need one. Show the republicans the their stupid ideas can be overturned. We can do this. Get involved. Our country depends on it !!!!!!!!!!

    October 9, 2011 05:32 pm at 5:32 pm |
  8. Chipster

    @cigarman FYI: the banking bailouts were signed by Bush in Oct 2008. The auto bailout was signed by Bush in Dec. 2008. Just sayin' . . .

    October 9, 2011 05:52 pm at 5:52 pm |
  9. Chipster

    @Four and The Door Obama's stimulus package was $700 billion. Bush inherited a national debt of 5.5 trillion and doubled it to the tune of $11.6 trillion. If you're referring to the bailouts, look up 2008 when BUSH was president. The cost of fighting 2 wars, UNFUNDED Medicare Part D ( banning Medicare from negotiating lower prices), and cutting taxes for the wealthiest Americans created the huge hole we're in, not the $700 stimulus. Despite the rhetoric, it did save and create jobs. In Dec. 2008, we were losing 500k to 700k jobs per month!

    October 9, 2011 05:59 pm at 5:59 pm |
  10. Ed 1

    I guess that's why packed your bags and went running as fast as you could away from Obama never could stand losing could you.

    Obama is not a leader all he can do is be a Rock Star and blame other people for what he said he could fix in three years just more lies.

    October 9, 2011 06:00 pm at 6:00 pm |
  11. Tired of the nonsense

    President Obama will win because he's -
    1) Intelligent
    2) Knows what a Constitution is and what it's for
    3) Loves this country and the American people
    4) Best person running
    5) He's not a republican, a teabag or a neocon
    6) He's trying to get us out of the mess the republicans/teabags/neocons have put us into
    7) He's well-respected and trusted
    8) He has the ability to actually do something with the job and not just be a mouthpiece like his predecessor
    9) He's actually trying to get this country back on its feet and is not out for power like the GOP and their ilk

    October 9, 2011 06:28 pm at 6:28 pm |
  12. encore

    i"m still voting for president Obama period.

    October 9, 2011 06:35 pm at 6:35 pm |
  13. Allie

    Clinton surplus. Bush two wars, big deficit, two terms. Obama bad economy, not his fault. 2012, Rep. victory = repeat W's failures. Result: US down the drain.

    October 9, 2011 06:41 pm at 6:41 pm |
  14. liberal texanist

    Obama's spending didn't earn us a downgraded rating ... the teathuglican debt ceiling fight did that. The economy has not been allowed to recover because the gop is fighting every single thing proposed in order to destroy Obama and the USA is collateral damage. Tea Party and GOP voters should be dragged into the streets and beheaded like treasonous scum as they would do in the Middle East.

    October 9, 2011 06:44 pm at 6:44 pm |
  15. Larry L

    It's tough to get elected when the opposition only cares about keeping the wealthy people rolling in money and promoting a bigoted and narrow-minded social agenda. The right-wing wants America to fail and cares absolutely nothing about the middle calss or the poor.

    October 9, 2011 06:52 pm at 6:52 pm |
  16. Chipster

    I'm really weary of people blaming Obama for the $5 trillion in bailouts, huge tax cuts for the wealthy while fighting 2 wars, and unfunded Medicare Part D while banning Medicare from negotiating lower prices! Bush signed the banking bailout in Oct. 2008 and the auto bailouts in Dec. 2008. Obama's effort to stimulate the economy was a $700 billion stimulus that did create and save jobs! You can't lay Bush's $5 trillion addition to the debt at his door – Bush owns that!

    October 9, 2011 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  17. SiriusVH

    U.S. Treasury debt was not downgraded because of Obama, ... you KNOW that ... It was downgraded because your little friends, the TPsters were willing to go to default just to get what they wanted. There will be a price to pay in 2012 for the TPsters .... I think that you can count on it 🙂

    October 9, 2011 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  18. Tony 140

    Please stop with this administration saving the auto industry. Ford didn't need a bailout. My next car will be a Ford. Why did the government have to get involved. Let them be just like anyother industry that mismanaged their business. Let them file for bankrupcy and let that system and the courts force them to re-organize, renegotiate contracts and adjust manpower to get competitive again. Tell me how many of our airlines have been thru this and are now viable enterprises again. The government needs to stay out of it.

    October 9, 2011 07:00 pm at 7:00 pm |
  19. Tony 140

    Didn't take Rahm long to desert the sinking ship. Isn't political loyalty just wonderful?

    October 9, 2011 07:02 pm at 7:02 pm |
  20. Reggie from LA

    Don't know where Four and the Door got his/her math from. 5 Trillion is it. One of the problems we face is bogus money figures, but I digress. We have been told by the GOP to forget about the Bush administration. Just like that. "Don't blame Bush. It's Obama's watch now". Yeah. Just forget about it and vote him out because he didn't fix it...yet. Let see, wars, natural disasters, health care issues, economic failures and a Republican-majority congress. Yeah, shoulda' had it fixed by now. Oh yeah. Emanuel forgot about the hate vote. Ooops. I shouldn't have said that. It's my imagination.

    October 9, 2011 07:09 pm at 7:09 pm |
  21. glm

    Ron Paul is why I'm a registered as Repub and he's getting my vote in the Repub primary. The election is his to lose because Obama and the Dems have nothing new to bring to the table and we need fresh new ideas to solve the economic woes. I'm excited about the future with Dr Ron Paul.

    October 9, 2011 07:12 pm at 7:12 pm |
  22. Rick McDaniel

    Well, if CNN has their way, Obama will get re-elected........because they are slanting every single story, every single interview, towards favoring the Democrats, and opposing the GOP.

    Seems that CNN favors dictatorship in America.

    October 9, 2011 07:20 pm at 7:20 pm |
  23. Johnson

    A president cannot do anything if he has a congress that WILL NOT SUPPORT HIM! If all you are going to doing is seek his failure then the country as a whole WILL FAIL. They are trying to make everything gloomy all the way too election day. How pitiful this country can be, we as voters allow it.

    Obama / Biden 2012

    October 9, 2011 07:21 pm at 7:21 pm |
  24. T'sah from Virginia

    ►Everyone knows that except the suckers still fooled into donating for his 2012 campaign.◄\

    Then there must be a WHOLE LOT OF SUCKERS on the LEFT!!! How about explaining all of the donors/suckers on the RIGHT who thought Palin and Bachmann will be president? And the other LOSERS donating to Perry, MITTens, Santorum, (well, not CAIN because he's just there for show) and others!! All in all, at least President Obama will win in 2012 and the donations will not be wasted!!

    Obama/Biden 2012!!

    October 9, 2011 07:24 pm at 7:24 pm |
  25. cindy

    Well,this "sucker"will vote Obama-Biden in 2012. The party of NO has NOthing to offer except undying devotion to Grover Norqui$t and corporations.

    October 9, 2011 07:50 pm at 7:50 pm |
1 2