Rahm Emanuel

United States Ambassador to Japan since 2022

Rahm Israel Emanuel (born 29 November 1959) is an American politician who served as the 55th Mayor of Chicago from 2011 to 2019. A member of the Democratic Party, he previously served as the 23rd White House Chief of Staff from 2009 to 2010, and as a member of the United States House of Representatives from Chicago between 2003 and 2009.

Rahm Emanuel




  • I have a lot to weigh: the basis of public service, which I've given my life to, a career choice. And most importantly, what I want to do as a parent. I know something about the White House. That, I assume, is one of the reasons that President-elect Obama would like me to serve. But I also know something about what it means to a family.
    [Republicans] can go fuck themselves!
  • You never want a serious crisis to go to waste. And what I mean by that [is] it's an opportunity to do things that you think you could not before.
About the quote: Emanuel was not the first to express this idea, as pointed out in a 2009 New York Times Magazine article. However this statement - which proposed a way the Obama administration could actually harness the chaos of the Financial Crisis of 2008 - became a frequently-repeated slogan for many economists, policy makers and business people who sought to improve the world's financial and economic systems.


[As chief of staff] just remember whose name was on the ballot, check your ego at the door and understand you're there to serve the President.
  • Chief of staff is the only White House job with two titles: chief and staff. The first allows for structure and accountability. The second, well, just remember whose name was on the ballot, check your ego at the door and understand you're there to serve the President and ensure that his—or, someday, her—vision is being executed. When I had the role, I used to joke on Fridays, "Lucky us, just two more workdays until Monday." It's an all-consuming, thankless job—but walking through those gates at the beginning and end of each day, no matter how early or late, brings a tingle to your spine. The day that goes away is the day it's time to go.


  • This is an ironic choice for a president-elect who has promised to change Washington, make politics more civil and govern from the center.
  • I’m running for mayor of the city of Chicago because Chicago needs to go in a different direction. For the past four years, we’ve seen Mayor Emanuel arrive in town with a boatload of money, impose his policies on the people of the city of Chicago. They favored a select few in Chicago. Through the amassing of large sums of money, he thought he could get re-elected, while leaving behind Chicago neighborhoods, making Chicago a city that leads the nation in the number of school closings—almost 50—and making Chicago, at the same time, one of the most violent cities in the country.
  • When I first met him, we had dinner together, and he said, “Well, you know, 25 percent of these kids are never going to be anything. They’re never going to amount to anything. And I’m not throwing money at it.” And I was like, “Wow! You know, even if you believe that, you can’t say that to me.” So, I just watch how he has used black and brown and poor children as props to push an agenda that is all about privatization and all about so-called accountability, but it’s really the status quo, because once schools get put on probation here in Chicago, the Chicago Public Schools takes over, takes away the democratically controlled local school councils, takes that power away from them to hire and fire and evaluate principals and to spend discretionary funds. So, we see this culture of punishment and culture of disinvestment, and it is rampant and obviously spreading throughout the country.
  • Rahm Emanuel is son of the devil's spawn. He is an individual who would sell his mother to get a vote. He would strap his children to the front end of a steam locomotive.
  • (Mother's Day) is a tough holiday for Rahm Emanuel because he's not used to saying the word "day" after "mother".
    • President Barack Obama, during the 2009 White House Correspondents Dinner. [3]
  • It is also a truly embarrassing indictment of what's considered "center" politics in the US that objecting to the appointment of an official who helped cover up the murder of a Black child is deemed the "progressive, far left" position...What is so hard to understand about this? Rahm Emanuel helped cover up the murder of Laquan McDonald. Covering up a murder is disqualifying for public leadership. This is not about the "visibility" of a post. It is shameful and concerning that he is even being considered.
  • Several years ago, Chuy Garcia ran a brilliant and surprisingly effective campaign for mayor against Rahm Emanuel, the machine-backed and well-funded Democrat.
  • With Rahm, you get someone who is both a great strategic thinker and a great tactician. It's great to have someone who knows the Congress inside and out. There can often be major differences between the executive branch and the congressional branch, even when you're from the same party. It will certainly help in terms of getting things done.
  • Two of Chicago’s four city pension funds will be bankrupt within a few years, according to Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel. You’d think that’s a scenario unions – the supposed champions for public-employee retirements – would want to avoid.
    But not in Chicago. Unions are fighting to block any kind of pension reform, effectively locking in bankruptcy for city-employee pension systems.
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