Milbank Shows Rahm Some Love

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large_barack-obama_rahm-emanuel-june6-2008_meye.jpgThis morning in the Washington Post, Dana Milbank challenges Edward Luce, Leslie Gelb, Jane Hamsher and me on our recent pieces explicating the management and policymaking mess among Barack Obama’s core team. (Here is my piece.)
Let’s set aside for another post the fact that Milbank’s column seems to channel Rahm directly. The piece conveys a detailed knowledge of what exactly Rahm advised Obama to do — and how exactly Obama allegedly rebuffed Emanuel.
So, Rahm, or Milbank on his behalf, seems to be appealing to President Obama to just listen to Rahm more and all will be well.
But then Milbank jumps on the bandwagon of those he starts his piece rebuffing and suggests that the White House dump Gibbs, Axelrod, and Jarrett.
Not even my essay went that far.
This reminds me of a vignette at the tail end of Richard Wolffe’s interesting profile of the Obama campaign titled Renegade: The Making of a President in which Emanuel tried to “export” Valerie Jarrett to the U.S. Senate to fill Obama’s seat and to pry her away from such constant, intimate proximity to the President.
Seems like via Dana Milbank, Rahm Emanuel is still trying to pry them away.
Today’s column starts:

Let us now praise Rahm Emanuel.
No, seriously.

I wondered if there was a foundation in their relationship for this kind of adoration. Well, maybe.
I found this June 2009 profile of Rahm Emanuel by Milbank. Read the whole thing, but here’s a bit slug that could explain why Emanuel would send some sizzle Milbank’s direction:

For a disciplinarian, Rahm Emanuel was remarkably loose as he sat down to breakfast at the St. Regis hotel yesterday.
On South Carolina’s adulterous governor, Mark Sanford: “There’s a guy that needed a cigarette.”
On talking with his mouth full: “If this was more of a Jewish family, I’d feel fine.”
On the woman he wants to run for Senate in Illinois: “She is the 800-pound gorilla here.”
Then there was this unusual aphorism coming from a man who worked in the West Wing when the Monica Lewinsky scandal broke: “What happens in the Oval Office stays in the Oval Office.”
What made this all the more surprising was that President Obama’s chief of staff gave this performance at a table with 40 journalists, their tape recorders running, in an on-the-record forum hosted by the Christian Science Monitor.
At one point during Emanuel’s free-flowing talk, he was discussing the Republicans’ woes when a White House deputy press secretary, seated at a table in the back of the room, abruptly sat up in his seat. “Am I getting that look from you that I’m being too political, Bill?” Emanuel asked. Bill Burton protested that this wasn’t the case, but Emanuel went on: “I haven’t seen you sit up like that in a long time. You were just worried about where this was going, Bill?”
With Emanuel, who floated the incautious view last year that one should “never allow a crisis to go to waste,” it wasn’t an unreasonable fear. But he returned his focus to his questioners. “I just looked up and I caught this hairy eyeball by Bill,” he said, explaining: “I’m trying to repress my political gene as much as I can.”
Impossible. Emanuel could no longer repress his political gene than his need for oxygen — and that is what makes him particularly good at his job. In his hour with the press yesterday, he made a far more cogent case for Obama’s agenda, and how the president can get it enacted, than the guy paid to do that, White House press secretary Robert Gibbs. Where Gibbs seems to delight in condescension and combat, Emanuel offered a refreshing measure of candor.
On immigration legislation, he admitted that yesterday’s meeting at the White House with immigration advocates was “because the votes aren’t there” to pass it. “If the votes were there, you wouldn’t need to have the meeting, you’d go to a roll call,” he said, his legs crossed and his arm draped over the moderator’s chair.
He volunteered that Hillary and Bill Clinton made “a big mistake” 15 years ago when they refused to accept a health-care reform measure by Republican Sen. John Chafee (R.I.) that was very close to the first lady’s doomed proposal.
And he acknowledged that Obama’s dream of bipartisanship may need to be redefined downward. The absence of GOP moderates — in no small part because Emanuel targeted them when he was running the House Democrats’ campaign effort — “makes getting quote unquote bipartisanship done hard,” he said. He proposed that the health-care legislation in Congress could be bipartisan without Republican votes. “This will be bipartisan; there will be ideas from both parties, and individuals from both parties in the final product,” he said. “Whether Republicans decide to vote for things they promoted will be up to them.”
Emanuel, his hair graying and thinning as he approaches his 50th birthday, took off his jacket and tried to interject wisecracks even before the moderator, Dave Cook, finished his introduction. At the Monitor breakfasts, the guest speakers typically push their plates away to speak; Emanuel ate from his, and occasionally punctuated his remarks with soft burps.

— Steve Clemons

Comments

21 comments on “Milbank Shows Rahm Some Love

  1. DavidT says:

    Steve,
    Trying to hold my tongue (or restrict too many expressions of displeasure) :). I’m not sure I would would want Mr.Emanuel as my neighbor, particularly if we had a dispute over property boundaries. But even if our president hasn’t fulfilled all his promise (and you didn’t seem to think he would — or come even close to it — during the campaign, the post-election pre-inauguration period, or thereafter based on your postings), how is this evidence of Mr. Emanuel’s singular failings? You say that “even you” don’t go so far as to suggest replacing Jarrett, Axelrod, and Gibbs. But don’t you really mean that you’re for replacing people, you’re just against firing those three (instead of you know who).
    Other posters seem to take the opportunity to attack Administration policies overseas as well as other policies that have not been as abruptly ended as they would have liked that were the previous administration’s reactions to 9/11. I understand the frustration but feel that this policy is less the result of Obama being “out of touch” and more those who feel the way they do being out of touch with the political realities the president has faced.
    I know you’re a leader at an institution that grapples with public policy issues and does serious analysis of problems and tries to formulate solutions to those problems. While your attacks on Mr. Emanuel ( which you soften by saying he would be better somewhere else or that the problem is the four staffers rather than just him) may appeal to your visceral sentiments towards Mr. Emanuel, where’s the analysis? Why don’t you engage in any serious manner the points Milbank is making — namely that clipping one’s wings to further one’s cause has advantages over being more ambitious but the ending up with nothing. If Emanuel needs to go, in your opinion, what are the characteristics one should look for in his successor that he was lacking? Or is this just a personality thing? I thought people who worked at the New America Foundation were willing to consider the trade-offs of one policy over another. Do you believe such an approach is unsound?
    Fondly, DavidT

    Reply

  2. drew says:

    No, Gitmo and the KSM trials were not foregone failures just
    because the COS opposed them (if he did).
    They were just bad ideas: bullet points in an ideological
    narrative, not ideas that had any reasonable potential to be
    enacted.
    The merits of the ideology of closing Gitmo are one thing, but
    I’m a little surprised Obama didn’t ask somebody, “Sure, let’s
    close the place. How we gonna do that, because if I’m still in
    the Senate I’m not voting to release the bad guys to fight again,
    or send them to my home state.” I mean, it was just amateur
    hour, and another example of confusing a campaign (“We should
    …”) with governing (“Here’s how we can …”).
    Some of the warmth Dana is showing must be to his belief that
    he is getting unvarnished opinion from Emanuel, rather than
    attitude (Gibbs), campaign jingles and talking points (Axelrod),
    and dead air (Obama, no press con in over 200 days). I have no
    idea what Jarrett does, if she does anything. Maybe she’s the
    political officer.
    Also, he has to write one or two non-snarky columns a year,
    right?

    Reply

  3. Dan Kervick says:

    Millbank’s chief argument on behalf of Rahm Emanuel comes down to this: Emanuel opposed Obama’s decisions to do X, Y and Z; and sure enough, X, Y and Z turned out to be political failures. Thus, Emanuel has proven to be the real brains of the White House outfit, and Obama needs to listen to them more, not sack him.
    But Millbank says that Emanuel “has his own small press operation and outreach function.” So the question I have is this: Isn’t failure on initiatives like the Guantanamo and KSM matters a foregone conclusion when the Chief of Staff strenuously opposes them, and uses his own personal press network to spread his poisonous negativism around Washington?
    There are certain principles that Obama ran on, whether Emanuel likes it or not. And Obama won his race handily. Democrats are sick of playing defense in their own administration. Everywhere we turn conservatives are on the march, and the White House has seemingly bent over backwards to appease them, agree with them, multiply their power and demean core Democratic voters.
    It doesn’t have to be this way: American principles of justice, honor and courage in the defense of liberty are *easy* sells – at least for that non-crawling species of Americans who actually believe in them, and know how to express them in their most attractive and appealing forms. It is Cheneyite conservatives who should be running in retreat back into the cowardly and un-American holes from which oozed.
    Ditch Emanuel AND Gibbs. Keep Axelrod and Jarrett, but clip their responsibilities. Bring in some experienced outsiders; yes. But make them people who are deeply and passionately committed to the principles on which Obama sought the presidency.

    Reply

  4. Julie in VT says:

    I had an uneasy feeling as soon I read that Rahmbo would be named COS – his vindictive nature seemed a glaringly obvious reason NOT to put him in such a critical position – witness the treatment Howard Dean received, for example. Rahm needs to go YESTERDAY, and I can only hope, fervently, that POTUS has already made this decision. Based on the Milbank piece, it would seem so.

    Reply

  5. Williams says:

    Puzzling, with disappointment and surprise, over President Obama’s missteps and losses and vacillations as chief executive, I have wondered if I am the only one who feels that we may be watching a scenario similar to the one that characterized the Bush and Cheney relationship. Could anyone deny that Cheney burned (and still does) with ambition to occupy the Oval Office and possess all the bully power that implies, but lacked the courage to run for the office himself? Are we seeing the same dynamic with Obama and Rahm Emanuel? The latter’s rough ways, temperament, and reported thirst for vendetta against anyone who opposes him are analogous to those of the former VP’s.
    What emerged most from the Milbank piece that Steve Clemons discusses in this post is how Emanuel seems to be undermining all other advisors to the President, and thus the President’s autonomy itself. Determined to force his own will on the President’s agenda, this chief of staff’s arrogance and personal ambition appear to be blinding him to all ideas but his own, including those of the man he is supposed to be serving.
    Ultimately, if this is so, the responsibility for this parasitic dysfunction is with the President himself. And two cases can be made here. One, that Obama is much too easily charmed personally by some who are only too happy to abuse his good opinion and use him for their own agenda. And/or two, it may be that Emanuel is Obama’s alter ego — one who has always been free to speak and act however and whenever he wishes, unlike Obama who all his life has suffered under societal pressure to choose and restrain his words and ways as though walking through a minefield.
    The first case embodies a classic definition of weak character, and how disillusioning if this is the reality in someone who, instead, so many of us thought we were seeing remarkable strength and emotional intelligence. The second case is a commonplace vulnerability in human nature. It happens to many, it can be transitory and, though painful, it can teach self-wisdom and bring about greater maturity. In any case, I agree with Steve. The president needs to find a new job for Emanuel, one where he can do far less damage.

    Reply

  6. TonyForesta says:

    Ahhh, politics. In the real world there is no
    middle ground. There is no bipartisanship, (and
    there never was and never will be anyway as the
    last 50 years of American politics proves without
    a shadow of doubt.)- Individuals are either stand
    on and defend one side of the other on virtually
    every major issue. It is an absurd joke and
    patently FALSE conjuring that there could be any
    middle ground. Do we toss 14 TRILLION dollars to
    the den of vipers and thieves that are singularly
    responsible and culpable for the worst economic
    crisis since the “Great Depression”, – or do we
    redirect those funds to the American people,
    infrastructure, and a green technology future.
    Obviously – there was no middle ground when in
    came to the economic crisis. The predadatorclass
    owned and controlled every aspect of the message,
    and evidently every politician including Obama,
    and so the socalled middleground, and certainly
    more progressive voices were silenced, demonized,
    or ignored, and it is the predatorclass alone the
    den of vipers and thieves in the TBTF oligachs
    ALONE, SINGULARLY, and EXCLUSIVELY that have
    recognized any and every gain for the socalled
    bailouts and the fictional recovery!!!! There is
    no middle ground, no bipartisanship, no
    reconciliation, no compromise on these issues.
    Each individual must recognize and standup and
    resist wanton abuse, deception, and criminality,
    or – those individuals that do not – are party to,
    and complicit with those wanton abuses,
    deceptions, and crimes!!!
    Democrats need to fight, ulitimate fighter style.
    No rules, (just like the shaitans and fiends in
    the gop who are viscious, souless, and ruthless in
    their tactics, strategies, and operations), no
    standing 8, no referee’s, – it’s kill or be
    killed.
    The fascists in the gop, and their lockstep
    partisans in redneck Amerika are the bane and ruin
    of America, and must be defeated, put down, hung
    by the neck until dead. There is no middle
    ground.
    It’s either the people or the corporations that
    matter and benefit in America. Currently
    corporate oligarchs and the predatorclass own and
    control Amerika and the Amerikan government. We
    either change this evil reality, or we don’t, but
    there is no middle ground. There is no middle
    ground with nazi’s or fascists, or fundamentalist
    terrorists. These fiends must be defeated, and
    their evil must be excoriated from the face of the
    earth. If not – then the monsters, shaitans, and
    den of vipers and thieves will continue to
    dominate, ruin, and enslave Americans and America.
    There is no middle ground!!!

    Reply

  7. Mr.Murder says:

    IAEA, same old song and dance?
    [Informed Comment] Top Russian General: An American Attack on Iran w
    Posted by: “Juan Cole” jricole@gmail.com nasiriyyah
    Sat Feb 20, 2010 12:13 am (PST)
    “It appears that, the International Atomic Energy Agency is at least
    allowing for the possibility that documents allegedly found on a laptop
    some years ago –but discounted by the US Central Intelligence Agency
    and the Defense Intelligence Agency as of dubious provenance and
    incompatible with other intelligence gathered in Iran — point to a
    nuclear weapons program that no one has been able to locate. Some close
    observers have concluded that the laptop documents are forgeries. A new
    IAEA report that declines to dismiss the alleged documents will
    certainly cause the war lobby in the United States to redouble its
    efforts to get up an attack on Iran.
    Forged documents on the supposed purchase of yellowcake uranium by Iraq
    from Niger were used by George W. Bush to promote a war on Iraq. It was
    at that time the Intelligence and Research division of the Department
    of State that attempted to throw cold water on these “documents,” but
    was ignored by the president. Then head of the IAEA, Mohammed
    Elbaradei, was able to show them false in one afternoon.
    The UN inspectors have a right to be frustrated with Iran, which has
    allowed inspections of its Natanz nuclear enrichment site, but which
    has not been completely transparent or adhered to the letter of its
    obligations under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. But the sum of
    those frustrations does not point to a nuclear weapons program, unlike
    the disputed laptop documents. In statements to the press this fall, US
    intelligence officials have said that they stand behind the conclusions
    first reached in 2007, that Iran has no nuclear weapons program.
    The Obama administration wants stricter sanctions on Iran, and the
    Sarah Palin/ Daniel Pipes lunatic fringe wants a military attack on
    Iran.
    But Russia’s General of the Army Nikolay Makarov, Chief of the General
    Staff of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation, warned that an
    American attack on Iran now, when the US is bogged down in two wars,
    might well lead to the collapse of the United States. He said that such
    an attack would roil the region and have negative consequences for
    Russia (a neighbor of Iran via the Caspian Sea). And, he said, the
    Russian military is taking steps to forestall such an American strike
    on Iran. Makarov made the remarks in Vzglyad on Friday, February 19,
    2010, and they were translated or paraphrased by the USG Open Source
    Center:
    ‘Makarov also commented on the recent rumors about the possibility of
    an attack upon Iran by the United States. In his opinion, this would be
    complete madness on the part of the American military. He
    said: “Admiral Michael McMullen, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff,
    recently said that, in the United States, there is a plan for carrying
    out strikes against Iran but the United States clearly understands that
    now, when it is conducting two military campaigns, one in Iraq and the
    other in Afghanistan, a third campaign against Iran would simply lead
    to a collapse. It would not be able to withstand the strain.”
    Nevertheless, in proportion to the winding down of the campaigns in
    Iraq and Afghanistan, (the plan for) a war with the Islamic Republic of
    Iran, in the opinion of General Makarov, may again come out to the
    foreground.
    General Makarov, Chief of the General Staff, said: “The consequences of
    such an attack will be terrible not only for the region but also for
    us. Iran is our neighbor and we are very carefully following this
    situation. The leadership of our country is undertaking all measures in
    order not to allow such a (military) development of events.” ‘
    The less potentially catastrophic path, tougher United Nations Security
    Council sanctions, however, depend on Russia and China going along.
    Despite Washington’s optimism that Russia is softening toward the idea
    of stricter sanctions, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov threw cold water
    on that idea on Friday.
    In a radio interview on Friday with Ekho Moskvy Radio, which was
    translated by the USG Open Source Center, Lavrov was asked, “What is
    the situation with Iran’s foreign policy today? And is it true that we
    now have as a whole a united position with the United States on Iran?”
    The foreign minister replied, “I don’t think that we have a united
    position.” He said that both Washington and Moscow agree on the
    importance of not allowing “a violation of the regime of
    nonproliferation of nuclear weapons.” He said the two countries have
    the same position on this issue, “although we do not coincide 100 per
    cent in methods of implementing it.”
    So what Lavrov is saying is that the US and Russia do not actually have
    a common position or agree on really tough sanctions. They just both
    have a vague similar position that proliferation is bad.
    Lavror said that Moscow’s independent stance toward Iran is rooted in
    the two countries’ historical relationship as well as in Russian desire
    to get Iranian cooperation on such issues as the disposition of
    resources in the Caspian Sea. (For a quick overview of Russian-Iranian
    relations, see N.M. Mamedova, who also mentions Iran’s tacit support
    for Russia against Georgia in the Caucasus.) Lavror said:
    ‘ But Iran for us, unlike the US, is a close neighbour, a country with
    which we have had a very long, historically conditioned relationship, a
    country with which we cooperate in the economic, humanitarian and
    military-technology fields alike and, let me note this particularly, a
    country that is our partner in the Caspian along with three other
    Caspian littoral states.
    Therefore, we are not at all indifferent to what happens in Iran and
    around it. This applies to our economic interests and our security
    interests alike. This also applies . . . to the task of early
    settlement of the legal status of the Caspian Sea, which is not an easy
    task and in the approaches to which the Iranian position is close
    enough to ours.
    Therefore, speaking of the proliferation threats, yes, we are concerned
    about Iran’s reaction. ‘
    Lavrov is less convinced there is anything sinister about Iran’s
    civilian nuclear research, though he admits that questions remain:
    ‘ in the process of work, questions arose both from the IAEA’s
    inspectors themselves and on the basis of the intelligence which the
    IAEA obtains from various countries. They were questions that aroused
    suspicion as to whether there might in reality be some military aspects
    to Iran’s nuclear programme.
    These questions were presented to the Iranians, as required by the
    procedures applicable in such cases. And, some time ago, Iran answered
    most of them. In principle, its answers were satisfactory, in a way
    that was considered by the professionals in Vienna normal. However,
    some of the questions are still on the table. ‘
    So Lavrov thinks Iran’s answers are largely ‘satisfactory, ‘ though
    there remain small areas of uncertainty.
    Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu was in Moscow earlier this
    week calling for ‘crippling sanctions on Iran.’ Lavrov’s remarks
    clearly indicated that Moscow disagreed that that situation was so
    perilous as to call for such a step.
    But just to be sure there was no misunderstanding, Lavrov sent out his
    own deputy foreign minister, Sergei Ryabkov, to denounce any such talk.
    Ryabkov said, according to Xinhua, “The term ‘crippling sanctions’ on
    Iran is totally unacceptable to us. The sanctions should aim at
    strengthening the regime of non- proliferation . . . We certainly
    cannot talk about sanctions that could be interpreted as punishment on
    the whole country and its people for some actions or inaction . . . ”
    He said that Russia sought to settle differences with Iran through
    dialogue and engagement. He also pledged that Russia would honor its
    deal to provide Iran S-300 air defense systems. He said, “There is a
    contract to supply these systems to Iran and we will fulfil it. The
    delays are linked to technical problems with adjusting these
    systems . . . ”
    So on Friday, even as the hawks in Washington watered at the mouth at
    the prospect of being able to use the new IAEA report as a basis for
    belligerency against Iran, Russia’s foreign policy establishment was
    engaged in a whirlwind of activity aimed at throwing cold water on the
    idea that Moscow was in Washington’s back pocket on Iran sanctions. The
    chief of staff predicted American collapse in an Iran conflagration,
    and vowed in any case to try to block any such attack. The foreign
    minister pronounced himself largely but not completely satisfied with
    Iran’s answers concerning its nuclear activities, and underlined that
    Russia needs Iran because of Caspian issues (and he could have added,
    because of Caucasus and Central Asian ones). And then the deputy
    foreign minister was enlisted to slap Netanyahu around a little,
    presumably on the theory that it would sting less coming from someone
    with ‘deputy’ in his title.
    Those who have argued that Russia’s increasing willingness to acquiesce
    in tougher UNSC sanctions might influence China to go along, too,
    should rethink. Russia doesn’t seem all that aboard with a brutal
    sanctions regime, and China has its own reasons not to want its own
    deals with Iran to be declared illegal.”

    Reply

  8. Dan Kervick says:

    “Rham is better suited to being a bar room bouncer.”
    I always imagined him more as the guy getting bounced: a coarse and pugnacious little runt who eventually picks a fight with some of the more desirable patrons, and is shown the door for his impertinence.

    Reply

  9. Outraged American says:

    Rahm’s missing a finger tip so in order to make up he’s giving the
    finger to the whole world.

    Reply

  10. Carroll says:

    Rham is better suited to being a bar room bouncer.
    Except he’s too tiny.
    Maybe he has a complex about toughness that sometimes afflicts short men.
    Anyway he’s definitely not as asset imo.
    When I think of people I would like to see around Obama I think of Hagel and Chaffee.

    Reply

  11. Mr.Murder says:

    This is ground for both sides to move towards the middle. Complexities emerge.
    Unless stasis continues, and brings us to similar ends as we’ve seen vs. the west at this time.
    Suppose AQ has a mirror group emerge among the labor class? That is where this will head, strategically…
    Someone may need to dust off the Green Peril thesis and change around some of the names invovled, with a similar equation bearing parallel actions and results.

    Reply

  12. Outraged American says:

    You tell me what Iran had to do w/ the Jewish Holocaust and I’ll
    sign-up to invade Iran myself, knife between teeth, wearing only a
    bandana and a grenade belt.
    Seriously, Israel, get over your f_ing self.

    Reply

  13. nadine says:

    “How can Arab or Persian countries be riled about Palestine and let their own lands be landmarks to suffragaette classes of import workers and sex slaves?”
    Simple. Places like Dubai are not actually riled about Palestine. It’s just a convenience to keep their population’s gaze off of the import workers, the sex slaves, and their own general corrupt misrule. That’s why they keep paying the Palestinian groups never to settle. The I/P conflict is a pillar of support for all the Arab regimes. And Obama based his Mideast policy on the notion that Egypt and Saudi Arabia would really help him broker peace, lol. What a maroon.

    Reply

  14. Mr.Murder says:

    A relative’s best friend sends word from Dubai. He doesn’t like the customs, lack of alcohol, etc.
    However, his hotel is has a stocked bar, and all enough Russian hookers to make you think it was Istanbul.
    Perhaps Sec. Clinton could admonish the human trafficing in a speech. Certainly such rpactices are fit for higlighting and scorn. Perhaps that kind of leverage could assuade some of the Mid East topics?
    How can Arab or Persian countries be riled about Palestine and let their own lands be landmarks to suffragaette classes of import workers and sex slaves?
    Time to move the goalposts?

    Reply

  15. ... says:

    nadine – cheerleader for anyone supportive of israel…. forget the reasoning…

    Reply

  16. nadine says:

    Dana Milbank gives the distinct impression that out of the team of Obama, Rahm, Axelrod, Jarrett and Gibbs ONLY Rahm is competent. He calls Obama “airy and idealistic”. “Airy” might be a complement if you are a dancer. It is not a complement if you are Commander in Chief.

    Reply

  17. DakotabornKansan says:

    “So, Rahm, or Milbank on his behalf, seems to be appealing to President Obama to just listen to Rahm more and all will be well.”
    As Warren Buffet once said, “You don’t have to piss on an electric fence yourself to find out that it’s a bad idea.”
    And “…why Emanuel would send some sizzle Milbank’s direction…”
    “The same old sausage, fizzing and sputtering in its own grease.” – Henry James on Thomas Carlyle

    Reply

  18. ... says:

    let us leave aside for the moment that the washington post always channels the voice of the administration in general…. for the longest time it has never been a source of news in any significant regard other then this…i guess they are cozy up to the admin like fox news did during bush tenure…. they are the pravda of the usa….who needs them? anyone who reads it without this basic knowledge is wasting their time…

    Reply

  19. barley blair says:

    Mr. Emanuel is charming, self-effacing, and a political
    sociopath. Perhaps, unconsciously, he is the defender
    of a type of political hardball that would have been
    familiar to FDR or LBJ (or Richelieu, for that matter).
    He’s not an idealogue; he’s a survivor. The
    contemporary twist in DC, of course, is the fashion for
    the so-called professional press to rely on close,
    personal relationships (viz. prostitution) as a surrogate
    for hard work… or am I missing the sub-text of this
    article?

    Reply

  20. Outraged American says:

    Emanuel targeted Democratic candidates who were antiwar in the
    2006 elections. Scum.
    Hey, if you’re going to send me a dead fish buddy, make it a red
    snapper, cause I’m feeling like a nice curry today.

    Reply

  21. Don Bacon says:

    Emanuel, who served with the Israeli Army during the First Yellow Ribbon War, not only targeted moderate Repubs but also progressive Dems.
    It sounds like Emanuel’s soft burps might be the least of Obama’s WH problems. In a reversal, might Steve ask: Did the Tea Partiers Create Rahm?

    Reply

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