Rahm Emanuel Not Interested in Becoming First Jewish President

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Friday, 14 Feb 2014 02:10 PM

By Melissa Clyne

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Chicago Mayor and former Obama Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel says he has no interest in becoming the nation's first Jewish president, The Financial Times reports.

“Before being hired by Obama, Emanuel used to say he wanted to be America’s first Jewish Speaker,” writes columnist Edward Luce. “Now he is Chicago’s first Jewish mayor. If he succeeds, chiefly by fixing the city’s troubled finances, money would be no object.

"‘I have never heard Rahm say he wants to be president, says (former Obama campaign adviser David) Axelrod with conviction," Luce continues. "'I am done in this job,' says Emanuel, when I ask him if he wanted to be America’s first Jewish president. “I am done. Period. I have achieved my lifetime’s ambition.”

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Emanuel, 54, left the White House to run for mayor of the Windy City, billing himself as an agent for change after the 22-year reign of Richard M. Daley. He won the election and became the city’s top boss in 2011.

He has weathered some political storms, including drawing the ire of the Chicago Teachers Union and diminishing support in the black community, whose strong backing helped get him elected, The Huffington Post reported in October.

Known for his acerbic personality – former Secretary of Defense Robert Gates characterized Emanuel as a “whirling dervish with attention deficit disorder" — Emanuel is up for reelection in 2015.

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