Rahm Emanuel: White House Chief of Staff
Time to look at the White House staff to get a clearer picture of what’s behind the policies of this administration. First up, White House Chief of Staff Rahm “deadfish” Emanuel. We will get into the deadfish later. First here’s the WhiteHouse.Gov bio:
Rahm Emanuel is the White House Chief of Staff. Prior to joining President Barack H. Obama’s administration, Emanuel served in the House of Representatives, representing the fifth district of Illinois, and was Chairman of the House Democratic Caucus. As an advocate for Chicago’s working families, Emanuel served on the House Ways and Means Committee, which oversees taxes, trade, Social Security, and Medicare issues.
Appointed by then House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, Emanuel served as Chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee for the 2006 cycle. Under his leadership, Democrats gained 30 seats in the House without losing a single incumbent, and ushered in a new Democratic majority for the first time in more than a decade.
In January 2007, the new majority elected Emanuel to serve as Democratic Caucus Chair, the fourth-highest-ranking member of the House Democratic Leadership. As Chair, Emanuel led the Democratic Caucus in fulfilling its campaign promise to pass legislation reflecting the values and priorities of the American people.
Before being elected to Congress, Emanuel worked at the Chicago investment bank Wasserstein Perella. He was a core member of the Clinton White House from 1993 to 1998, starting as the national finance director for the 1992 campaign and eventually becoming Senior Adviser to the President for Policy and Strategy. In 1989, Emanuel was a senior adviser and chief fundraiser for Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley’s campaign. He also played an important role in Paul Simon’s 1984 campaign for the Senate.
Emanuel graduated from Sarah Lawrence College in 1981 and received a Master’s Degree in Speech and Communication from Northwestern University in 1985. He and his wife, Amy Rule, have three children, Zach, Ilana, and Leah.
Oh my, Why he’s a Paragon of Democratic Party Knighthood. Yea ok, lets look deeper. From Discover The Networks:
Emanuel’s interest in politics began when, as a college undergraduate, he worked on the congressional campaign of Chicago Democrat David Robinson. He proceeded thereafter to work as a fundraiser for a number of successful Illinois candidates before being drafted by the presidential campaign of Arkansas governor Bill Clinton in 1991.
Emanuel proved to be a shrewd tactician for Clinton, urging the latter, during the 1992 New Hampshire primary race, to focus more on fundraising efforts than on campaigning. The money Clinton collected would enable him to run an effective ad campaign aimed at countering the emerging controversies about the candidate’s past adulterous relationships and his draft-dodging activities during the Vietnam War.
Emanuel’s aptitude for fundraising continued to help the Clinton campaign throughout the primaries and into the general election. Of notable importance was Emanuel’s ability to connect with Jewish donors, who contributed heavily to Clinton’s then-unprecedented $72 million war chest. According to political consultant Steve Rabinowitz, “[Emanuel] schmoozed many, many millions all over the country, including money from traditional Democratic Party givers, who are disproportionately Jewish, and new Democratic givers.”
On November 4, 1992 — the night after Clinton had been elected President — Emanuel and other campaign aids convened for a celebratory dinner. At one point in the evening, the discussion turned to the topic of certain individuals who, in the estimation of Emanuel and his cohorts, had somehow betrayed the Clinton cause. One such person was Nathan Landow, a fundraiser who had backed the candidacy of Clinton’s Democrat rival Paul Tsongas. Another was William Donald Schaefer, the Democrat governor of Maryland who had endorsed Republican incumbent George H.W. Bush. In a fit of anger, Emanuel, wielding a steak knife, stood up amidst his dinner companions and proceeded to stab the table repeatedly, screaming: “Nat Landow! Dead!… Bill Schaefer! Dead!…”
On another occasion, the tempestuous Emanuel mailed a 30-inch decomposing fish to a pollster who had annoyed him.
During Clinton’s first five years in the White House, Emanuel continued to serve as an aid to the President. Perhaps his most high-profile assignment was as choreographer of the 1993 Rose Garden ceremony following the Oslo Accord, an event that featured the famous handshake between Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin and Palestinian Authority President Yasser Arafat.
Shortly after Clinton’s electoral victory in 1992, Emanuel began pushing the new President to exploit the issue of immigration for his political advantage. Heeding Emanuel’s advice, in September 1994 Clinton met with Daniel Solis, president of the Chicago-based United Neighborhood Organization (UNO), a Hispanic advocacy group. Solis told Clinton that if he could somehow swiftly naturalize the ever-growing number of non-citizen immigrants residing in the U.S., he would have a “great opportunity” to increase the pool of potential voters who might support his re-election bid in 1996. Clinton instructed Solis to stay in contact with Emanuel on this matter; Solis and Emanuel soon coordinated a scheme — which was titled “Citizenship USA” and was headquartered in Vice President Al Gore’s office — to fast-track the naturalization process for both legal and illegal immigrants before the 1996 election. According to one INS security official:
“The goal was to speed up the process and turn as many legal residents and illegals into Clinton voters as possible…. Rahm was doing it under the guise of Al Gore’s Reinventing Government program. He [Emanuel] was definitely the point man and was past his neck in the scandal at INS…. He got every rule changed in the hiring of adjudicators so they could naturalize more Mexican nationals to vote for Bill Clinton, not to mention getting the rules changed to naturalize anyone [regardless of their immigration status or criminal history]…. They had immigration ceremonies at stadiums with DNC (Democratic National Committee) staff registering them as voters right there.”
At one Chicago ceremony held inside the Soldier Field football stadium, approximately 11,000 new citizens were sworn in en masse.
A former INS district director, William Carroll, stated that in March 1996 he and his colleagues had been given “marching orders” to naturalize as many new citizens as possible in advance of the November election, even in the absence of criminal and national security background checks of the applicants.
INS deportation officer Tom Conklin concurred that he and other agents had been pressured to approve the citizenship applications of immigrants “with two or three arrests for crimes like burglary.”
Justice Department Inspector General Glenn A. Fine subsequently conducted an investigation of Emanuel’s role in the citizenship scheme. Fine concluded that “the INS had compromised the integrity of naturalization adjudications as a result of its efforts to process applicants more quickly and meet a self-imposed goal of completing more than a million cases by the end of fiscal year 1996.” According to Fine, the Clinton administration had followed “inadequate procedures for checking criminal histories and fingerprints.” Fine added that Emanuel had refused his request for an interview.
In 1998 Emanuel left his advisory position at the White House to work as an investment banker at the firm of Wasserstein Perella, where he earned $16.2 million during a two-and-a-half-year stint.
In 2000 Emanuel was again called upon by Bill Clinton, this time to serve on the Board of Directors for the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation (Freddie Mac). During his tenure on the Board, Freddie Mac was plagued by such major scandals as accounting fraud and illegal campaign contributions to congressional candidates. Emanuel resigned from the Board in 2001.
In 2002 Emanuel ran for public office and was elected as the Democrat Representative for Illinois’ 5th congressional district, easily defeating Republican opponent Mark Augusti.
In January 2005 Emanuel was named Chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) for the 2006 election season. Such was his success in engineering important victories for the Democratic Party in that year’s mid-term elections, that Illinois Republican Representative Ray LaHood said of Emanuel: “He legitimately can be called the golden boy of the Democratic Party today. He recruited the right candidates, found the money and funded them, and provided issues for them.”
Emanuel’s strategy in 2006 was to focus not only on fundraising, but also on an aggressive propaganda campaign deriding Republicans for such transgressions as their mismanagement of the Iraq War, their allegedly inadequate response to Hurricane Katrina, and their scandals involving figures like Mark Foley, Tom DeLay, and Jack Abramoff. Most notably, Emanuel recruited numerous moderate and conservative Democrat candidates — a number of whom were military veterans — to run for election in Southern and Midwestern districts where doctrinaire leftists would have stood little chance of winning.
As a result of the foregoing strategies, Democrats in 2006 gained 30 congressional seats, there by seizing control of the House of Representatives and setting the stage for Nancy Pelosi to become Speaker of the House.
Emanuel was elected Chairman of the Democratic Caucus, making him the fourth highest ranking member of the Democratic leadership in the House.
Emanuel went on to become a close advisor to Senator Barack Obama, particularly during the latter’s run for the White House in 2008. On November 6, 2008, President-elect Obama named Emanuel to serve as his White House Chief of Staff.
Shortly before Obama’s November 4, 2008 election victory, Emanuel had conversations with Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich’s Chief of Staff John Harris about who would fill Obama’s vacant Senate seat if Obama were to win the presidency. According to one source, Emanuel gave Harris a list of candidates who would be “acceptable” to Obama. The names on the list included Obama adviser Valerie Jarrett, Illinois Veterans Affairs director Tammy Duckworth, state Comptroller Dan Hynes, and U.S. Rep. Jan Schakowsky of Illinois—all Democrats. Sometime shortly after the election, Emanuel telephoned John Harris to add the name of Democratic Attorney General Lisa Madigan to the approved list.
In December 2008 it was revealed that Blagojevich, who was authorized by Illinois law to name a successor to Obama, had been secretly taped telling political confidantes that he was aiming to sell the Senate seat in exchange for campaign cash, a lucrative job, an ambassadorship, or a Cabinet post. After these charges against Blagojevich became public, Emanuel refused to respond to reporters’ questions about any involvement he may have had with the governor’s office over the Senate pick.
In December 2008 it was reported that Emanuel, cognizant of the fact that the economic recession in which America was mired presented an opportunity for the Democratic Party to enact sweeping legislation under the guise of an economic recovery plan, had said the following in a candid moment: “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 do before.”
In February 2009 it was learned that Emanuel had lived rent-free for years in the Capitol Hill townhouse of Connecticut Rep. Rosa DeLauro — and that he had failed to make mention of that fact on any of his financial-disclosure forms, as congressional ethics rules require for such arrangements (which are classified by the IRS as gifts that are subject to taxes).
Following is an overview of Emanuel’s congressional voting record from 2003 through 2008, as per key pieces of legislation covering a wide array of issues.
Abortion and the Rights of the Unborn
In April 2000, June 2003, and October 2003, Emanuel voted against legislation to ban the late-term abortion procedure commonly known as partial-birth abortion (a.k.a. “intact dilation and extraction”). According to the Alan Guttmacher Institute, in the year 2000 this procedure was performed approximately 2,200 times in the United States.
In February 2004 Emanuel voted against the Unborn Victims of Violence Act, which proposed to make it an added criminal offense for someone to injure or kill a fetus while carrying out a crime against a pregnant woman.
In April 2005 and September 2006, Emanuel voted against the Child Interstate Abortion Notification Act, whose purpose was to prohibit the transportation of a minor across state lines to obtain an abortion without a parent’s (or a legal guardian’s) consent.
In December 2006 Emanuel voted against the Abortion Pain Bill, which mandated that abortion providers, prior to performing an abortion on a fetus older than 20 weeks, inform the mother that: (a) the fetus might feel pain during the procedure, and (b) the use of some pain-reducing drugs may have health risks associated with them.
As a result of his unwavering support for the unrestricted right to abortion-on-demand under any and all circumstances, Emanuel has consistently received ratings of 100 percent from NARAL and Planned Parenthood. These ratings indicate that Emanuel’s votes and stated positions on abortion-related matters have mirrored, literally without exception, the positions of these organizations. Indeed, since at least 1995 Emanuel has supported the agendas of Planned Parenthood 100 percent of the time.
In September 2004 Emanuel voted against a bill that would have prohibited same-sex marriage. In July 2006 he voted against a proposed constitutional amendment defining marriage in America exclusively as the union of one man and one woman.
TaxesIn May 2003 Emanuel voted against a $350 billion tax cut. This bill contained, among other things, a provision to eliminate the so-called “marriage tax penalty” by making the standard deduction for married couples twice that of a single filer.
In May 2004 he voted against a proposal to extend the alternative minimum tax relief that had been available in 2003 and 2004.
Also in May 2004, he voted against a proposal to make the $1,000-per-child tax credit permanent rather than letting it decline to $700 in 2005. Four months later he voted against another bill calling for a five-year extension on the $1,000 child tax credit.
In October 2004 he voted against a ten-year, $145 billion tax cut for domestic manufacturers and small corporations.
In April 2005 he voted against a proposal to permanently repeal the estate tax.
In November 2005 he voted against a bill calling for a $49.91 billion reduction in federal spending over a five-year period. Twelve months later he voted against a similar five-year proposal for $56.1 billion in federal spending reductions; that bill also called for the retention of a reduced tax rate on capital gains and dividends.
In May 2006 he voted against $69.96 billion in tax cuts and credits through 2010, including reductions of 15 percent on capital gains taxes and 5 percent on dividends taxes.
In June 2006 he voted against a proposal to reduce estate taxes beginning in 2010; that proposal would have set the new rates at 15 percent for estates worth up to $25 million, and 30 percent for estates valued at more than $25 million.
The most notable exception to Emanuel’s generally doctrinaire espousal of high taxation occurred in January 2008, when he voted in favor of a bill giving single taxpayers a tax credit of up to $600, and joint filers a tax credit of up to $1,200.
In May 2006 Emanuel voted against a proposal to provide funds for offshore oil exploration along the Outer Continental Shelf; instead, he favored a continuation of President Clinton’s 1998 moratorium on oil drilling.
MortgagesIn September 2007 Emanuel voted in favor of a bill calling on money lenders “to use risk-based pricing to more effectively reach underserved borrowers.” In other words, he was endorsing subprime loans to under-qualified borrowers—the very practice that eventually would lead to the cataclysmic collapse of Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and the mortgage industry.
Military CommissionsIn September 2006 Emanuel voted against a bill authorizing the President to establish military commissions to try enemy combatants captured in the war on terror. In Emanuel’s view, such tribunals trample on the civil rights and liberties of defendants who, he contends, should be entitled to all the rights and protections afforded by the American criminal court system—where the standards that govern the admissibility of evidence are considerably stricter than the counterpart standards in military tribunals.
Counter-Terrorism & Homeland Security
In July 2005 Emanuel voted in favor of reauthorizing the post-9/11 anti-terrorism measure known as the Patriot Act.
In September 2006 he voted against an amendment to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) of 1978; this amendment called for allowing the government to use electronic surveillance to investigate suspected terrorist operatives.
In August 2007 he voted against a bill permitting the Director of National Intelligence and the Attorney General to monitor foreign electronic communications which are routed through the United States—provided that the purpose of such monitoring was to obtain “foreign intelligence information” about suspected terrorists. In June 2008 he voted in favor of a bill specifically prohibiting this type of surveillance.
Iraq War / War on Terror
In June 2006 Emanuel voted against a resolution which stated that it was not in America’s national security interest to set an arbitrary date for the withdrawal of its troops from Iraq, and that a better course of action would be to withdraw the troops only upon the “completion of the mission to create a sovereign, free, secure and united Iraq.”
In February 2007 he voted to disapprove of President Bush’s decision to move ahead with the so-called troop “surge”—the deployment of some 21,500 additional U.S. soldiers in an effort to quell the violent insurgents in Iraq.
In May 2007 Emanuel voted in favor a proposal to expedite the transfer of all prisoners currently being held in the Guantanamo Bay detention center, most of whom are, as Gordon Cucullu writes in The American Enterprise, “not innocent foot soldiers” but rather “Islamic fundamentalists from across the Middle East, rabid jihadists who have dedicated their lives to the destruction of America and Western civilization.”
That same month, Emanuel voted in favor of an amendment to withdraw U.S. troops from Iraq within 90 days.
In July 2007 he voted to begin dramatically reducing the presence of U.S. troops in Iraq by April 1, 2008.
In June 2008 he voted in favor of exploring the possibility of impeaching President Bush on grounds that he had lied about U.S. intelligence on Iraq so as to justify the March 2003 American invasion.
Heres Rahm Emanuel advocating for negotiations with Iran with Bill Maher
In May 2004 Emmanuel voted “No” on requiring hospitals to report (to the federal government) illegal aliens who receive emergency medical treatment.
In February 2005 he voted against the Real ID Act, which proposed to: set minimal security requirements for state driver licenses and identification cards; require asylum applicants suspected of affiliating with terrorist groups to prove that they are indeed seeking to escape persecution in their homeland; and ensure that physical barriers to prevent illegal immigration would be expeditiously constructed where needed along the U.S.-Mexico border.
In December 2005 he voted against a bill calling for: the construction of some 700 miles of fencing along America’s southern border; the establishment of a system requiring business owners to verify the legal status of all their employees; the detention of any person attempting to enter the U.S. illegally after October 1, 2006; an increase in the penalties on anyone attempting to smuggle illegal aliens into the U.S.; the annual provision of $250 million to pay state and local police agencies for their assistance in enforcing federal immigration laws; and funding for a program to deport “removable criminal aliens” in prison following the completion of their sentences, rather than releasing them into American communities.
In June 2006 Emanuel voted in favor of an amendment prohibiting the U.S. government from tipping off Mexican officials as to the whereabouts of operatives working for the Minuteman Project, a nonviolent organization of American citizens who alert the U.S. Border Patrol to the presence of unauthorized border-crossers in the Southwestern states.
In September 2006 Emanuel again voted against a bill authorizing the construction of 700 miles of double-layered fencing between the U.S. and Mexico.
That same month, he voted against a proposal to grant state and local officials the authority to investigate, identify, and arrest illegal immigrants.
The Federation for American Immigration Reform, which “seeks to improve border security, to stop illegal immigration, and to promote immigration levels consistent with the national interest [about 300,000 a year],” gives Emanuel a rating of 0.
Already you can see much of Obama’s political stances and policies in agreement with Rahm Emanuel. The attack on Arizona’s SB1070 seems to be inviting Emanuels previous Immigrant scheme for Democratic voters. He served on the Board of Fannie/Freddie, who are conveniently exempt from Financial Reform and continue to ask for, and recieve, taxpayer funded bailouts. The voting record is also extremely similar.
Here is Rahm Emanuel talking about a mandatory service plan, something Obama also advocated for during his campaign.
An audio interview on the mandatory service plan
Speaking on “Face The Nation” on the future of President Elect Obama in 2008
And here he is at the end of Obama’s first 100 days in office in an intervie w with Katie Couric trying to defend TARP and Obama’s economic policies
Stay Classy Rahm, a compilation
So I’d say Rahm Emanuel is a hot headed radical. Tick him off, and if he’s not stabbing the table with a knife chanting your name and die, he just might mail you a decomposing fish. Regardless of your wishes, or your family needs, you will be forced to serve under a mandatory service plan. Illegal Immigrant? No Problem! Just vote Democrat. You can see why Obama has Emanuel as his Chief of Staff, they have similar views, and not one of those views is good for America or Freedom.