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Sticking it to Rahm: Inside story Of Why Not a Single House Republican Supported the President
The Daily Beast ^ | 1/29/09 | John Batchelor

Posted on 01/30/2009 11:40:26 AM PST by lewisglad

From their shared loathing of Rahm Emanuel to the insurgency led by the minority leader (“he took us by the throat”), the inside story of why not a single House Republican supported the president’s stimulus package.

"Rahm, you don't waste a crisis," a senior Republican, speaking on the phone in a mock dialogue, pretended to tease White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel the day before the stimulus bill vote in the House of Representatives. "Rahm, you're making the Clinton mistake going for spending in a crisis. Reagan radically adjusted the tax code in his crisis. Rahm, all you’re trying to do is scare people, like Hank Paulson did with the TARP. It won't work this time. We're wise to it. Rahm, you won't get ten votes from us. Not ten."

“Rahm hates us and lets us know it, and we hate him back,” said a senior Republican.

It turned out that this estimate was 1,000 percent too high, because Emanuel’s go-for-the-big-win style, even when mixed with the president’s earnest charm, did not gain even one vote from the House GOP. The caucus held together like a stone wall when it came time to vote on the Democratic-authored $825 billion stimulus package—all 177 members joined 11 “Blue Dog” Democrats for the 244-188 final tally. How this was done explains the sudden and surprising new discipline of the Republican Party.

"Rahm told the president that he can take care of Congress," a senior Republican reported to me. "He said, ‘These guys will roll over, they're afraid of being called the party of No. Believe me, I know them. They'll be easy.’"

The day before the vote, Emanuel sent the president to the Hill to meet with the House Republicans for a generous 90-minute question-and-answer session that was well-received by the members. "He's charming," was the universal verdict, one prominent Republican told me. “The president was patient, he gave us plenty of time. But he didn't convince anyone. After he left, we looked at each other, and said, ‘How can they stick him with this garbage?’”

Since the beginning of his campaign for the presidency, Barack Obama has spoken repeatedly of “post-partisanship.” He promised that he would transcend the divisions of the past by uniting Democrats and Republicans alike. His actions, engineered by Emanuel, were intended to win enough Republican votes to claim not just a victory on the stimulus bill but also confirmation of his “post-partisan” leadership. The result, with not a single Republican voting in favor, despite Obama’s wining and dining, joking and cajoling, reveals a Washington as polarized as it has ever been. The dream of post-partisanship did not last one vote in the Congress.

The day before the crucial vote in the House, Minority Leader John Boehner told his troops that the Republican Party is no longer a bureaucracy. "He took us by the throat and told us, ‘You're no longer the majority, stop acting like it,’" a senior Republican told me about the run up to the vote. “‘If you've got an idea, get it on MSNBC. This is an entrepreneurial insurgency.’ He was kicking the ball around. He wants everyone involved. If there's an amendment, he told us to offer it. If you have 48 seconds for YouTube, get it up there. Get busy and resist in every instance

Emanuel, working with his old boss and ally, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, made it easy for the Republicans to resist. Every penny in the more than 600-page bill came from a Democratic wish list of pork that dated back to the beginning of the Bush administration. "They were limited the last two years by the White House keeping firm on the cap for each bill," a congressional source reported to me, "and Nancy Pelosi told them all to send their ideas to David Obey [chairman of the House Appropriations Committee], and he just put them together in one great big earmark."

"We won the election, we wrote the bill," said Pelosi as many times as she could to an open microphone. But what was happening away from the microphone made it even easier for the Republicans to hold together. All they had to do was bring up Rahm Emanuel.

“Rahm hates us and lets us know it, and we hate him back,” said a senior Republican. “If we had gotten together in a room and tried to write a bill that put the taxpayer together with the Republican Party, we could not have come up with this thing. It is too unbelievable.”

Rahm Emanuel is the Republicans’ favorite piñata. Overwound and overbearing, the Chicago congressman helped destroy the Republican majority in 2006 when he acted as chief fund raiser, candidate recruiter, and stump speaker. On the night the Democrats took the House back after 12 years of Republican rule, he praised himself for delivering a “thumpin’.” Now that he’s Obama’s chief of staff, the Republicans have him to poke at for at least four years.

After the vote, President Obama, at Emanuel’s suggestion, hosted a bipartisan reception at the White House for congressional leaders from both houses. John Boehner joked that he felt like the “snake at the garden party.” But the Republican leaders were not silent.

“We gave the president what he asked for, a temporary stimulus bill,” said a senior Republican, “at half the cost of what the Democrats wrote. He knows it. They handed him a monster of spending. Rahm did this, and now he takes this to the Senate. Does Rahm want to be an honest broker, or does he want to be the guy who socks Republicans in the face? He isn’t helping with the Democrats, and he’s hurting with the Republicans.”

“Polling showed us that when we took the vote, independent support for the bill was collapsing,” a senior Republican said. “Democratic support was climbing while the independents ran away.”

“What does Rahm do? Is he going to go to the Democrats and say ‘no’ to this? Or is he going to make his president sign it?”

Emanuel’s answer to the Republican shutout is to announce that the Democratic Party will target Republicans by running campaigns in their districts to tell the voters that their representative “voted against 4 million jobs.”

Eight days after Obama’s inauguration, the partisan battles are at full tilt.

John Batchelor is radio host of the John Batchelor Show in New York, Washington, D.C., San Francisco, and Los Angeles.


TOPICS: Editorial; Front Page News; News/Current Events; Politics/Elections; US: District of Columbia
KEYWORDS: 11bravedemocrats; 11democrats; 12bravedemocrats; 12democrats; batchelor; bho2009; bho44; bhostimulus; democrats; emanuel; gop; johnbatchelor; rahm; rahmemanuel; stimulus
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1 posted on 01/30/2009 11:40:26 AM PST by lewisglad
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To: lewisglad
shared loathing of Rahm Emanuel

I'd be willing to pay to be let in on some shares of that.

“Rahm hates us and lets us know it, and we hate him back,” said a senior Republican all Americans everywhere.

2 posted on 01/30/2009 11:45:19 AM PST by Hardastarboard (The Fairness Doctrine isn't about "Fairness" - it's about Doctrine.)
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To: lewisglad
Boehner..."took us by the throat and told us, 'You're no longer the majority, stop acting like it."

Hell Boehner, they didn't act like it when they were the majority.

3 posted on 01/30/2009 11:48:32 AM PST by theDentist (Qwerty ergo typo : I type, therefore I misspelll)
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To: lewisglad

Hopefully we’ll get to see Emanuel take a perp walk from the White House to prison before he gets a chance to do too much damage. I’m hoping Blagojevich has something on him.


4 posted on 01/30/2009 11:49:10 AM PST by OB1kNOb (Quinn's 1st Law - Liberalism always generates the exact opposite of its original intent.)
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To: Hardastarboard

Hey,Rahm stand-up-Oh,you are!


5 posted on 01/30/2009 11:49:59 AM PST by Dr. Ursus
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To: lewisglad

“Eight days after Obama’s inauguration, the partisan battles are at full tilt.”

I feel a tingle up my leg when I read that.


6 posted on 01/30/2009 11:50:02 AM PST by Redgirl (Denial Anger Bargaining Depression Acceptance)
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To: lewisglad

It’s a damn good thing that the stimulus bill won’t do anything at all to help the economic situation, otherwise the GOP refusal to vote for it because of their personal dislike of one man might be seen as extremely short-sighted.


7 posted on 01/30/2009 11:51:17 AM PST by worst-case scenario (Striving to reach the light)
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To: lewisglad
I think President Soetero is going to regret having this infantile, partisan schmuck as his Chief of Staff.
8 posted on 01/30/2009 11:53:27 AM PST by Major Matt Mason (The Kenyan Keynesian will bankrupt this nation.)
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To: lewisglad

I hope Rahm loses it and physically attacks someone. His ass needs to be handed to him. And the Pubes better be out in full force to expose just how irresponsible this pork package is. I mean they need to be out there like it’s the end of the earth.


9 posted on 01/30/2009 11:53:47 AM PST by MAD-AS-HELL (How does one win over terrorists? KILL them with UNKINDNESS)
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To: Dr. Ursus

“Hey,Rahm stand-up-Oh,you are!”

Can you do that in your best Joe Biden voice? LOL!


10 posted on 01/30/2009 11:54:25 AM PST by Melinda
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To: lewisglad

The Democrats were partisan, for the bill.
The Republicans (with 10 Democrats) were bipartisan against the bill.


11 posted on 01/30/2009 11:55:04 AM PST by Scrambler Bob (If you could read my mind ... just count up the felonies!)
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To: lewisglad
The day before the vote, Emanuel sent the president to the Hill to meet with the House Republicans

Sent the [P]resident? Who the hell is in charge here?

12 posted on 01/30/2009 11:55:24 AM PST by numberonepal (Don't Even Think About Treading On Me)
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To: lewisglad

“Polling showed us that when we took the vote, independent support for the bill was collapsing,” a senior Republican said. “Democratic support was climbing while the independents ran away.”

When you have to depend on polling to tell you what to do, you are truly a lost soul. Whatever happened to principles? I guess that is so 50’s that no one even makes a pretense of having values.

One shudders to think of Jimmy Stewart going to Washington today. He would look like Martin Lawrence, be sucking up as much pork as he could and never listening to the people who elected him.


13 posted on 01/30/2009 11:56:21 AM PST by NTHockey (Rules of engagement #1: Take no prisoners.)
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To: lewisglad
...177 members joined 11 “Blue Dog” Democrats for the 244-188 final tally...

Bi-partisanship we can believe in, or from which we can believe. Maybe Billy-the-Bomber can rewrite that slogan for a better read, maybe with a nautical theme.

14 posted on 01/30/2009 11:56:32 AM PST by SERKIT ("Blazing Saddles" explains it all.....)
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To: Redgirl

Screw “post-partisanship,” “bipartisanship,” and “nonpartisanship.” We want full-tilt partisanship, and damn well better get it.

Handcuffing Congress is the only way to retain personal liberty. Gridlock is security.

And partisanship is diversity. Put that in your crack pipe, Rahm.


15 posted on 01/30/2009 11:56:55 AM PST by DPMD (~)
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To: Melinda

If his Veep gig doesn’t workout,there’s always stand-up comedy!


16 posted on 01/30/2009 11:57:27 AM PST by Dr. Ursus
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To: lewisglad

Principles?!!Principles?!We don’t need no steenkin’ Principles!!! We hate Rahm. THAT’S GONNA win a LOT of COngressional Districts for the Pubbies in 2010:) NOT


17 posted on 01/30/2009 11:58:02 AM PST by mo
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To: lewisglad
"Emanuel’s answer to the Republican shutout is to announce that the Democratic Party will target Republicans by running campaigns in their districts to tell the voters that their representative “voted against 4 million jobs."

]If they were sure it would create 4 million jobs they'd be more than happy to pass it without Republican support. They'd own it and shout it from the rooftops.

The only story we're hearing now is about no support.

In 4 years the Republicans should run campaigns asking where the 4 million jobs are.

18 posted on 01/30/2009 11:59:01 AM PST by libs_kma (F.U.B.O.)
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To: lewisglad

“After he left, we looked at each other, and said, ‘How can they stick him with this garbage?’”

LUV it!


19 posted on 01/30/2009 12:00:33 PM PST by Let's Roll (Stop paying ACORN to destroy America! Cut off their government funding!)
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To: lewisglad; All
" “Rahm hates us and lets us know it, and we hate him back,” said a senior Republican. "


20 posted on 01/30/2009 12:00:52 PM PST by musicman (Until I see a REAL C.O.L.B. BC, he's just "PRES__ENT" Obama = Without "ID")
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To: lewisglad

“Emanuel’s answer to the Republican shutout is to announce that the Democratic Party will target Republicans by running campaigns in their districts to tell the voters that their representative “voted against 4 million jobs.” “

LMAO

Please DO bring that up and OFTEN Rahm Conservatives HATE this bill. Its Carter and Clinton all rolled into One. Rahm has made a BIG mistake, called EGO. Whats funny is that he doesn’t even see it yet. LMAO


21 posted on 01/30/2009 12:01:36 PM PST by Danae (Amerikan Unity My Ass)
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To: numberonepal
Sent the [P]resident? Who the hell is in charge here?

Richard J. Daley, Jr.

What, you think a no-talent clown-shoes like The Zero is cunning enough to get himself elected President?

He's a puppet for the same people he's always been a puppet for. The Chicago machine.

22 posted on 01/30/2009 12:03:10 PM PST by Knitebane (Happily Microsoft free since 1999.)
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To: lewisglad
The day before the crucial vote in the House, Minority Leader John Boehner told his troops that the Republican Party is no longer a bureaucracy. "He took us by the throat and told us, ‘You're no longer the majority, stop acting like it,’" a senior Republican told me about the run up to the vote. “‘If you've got an idea, get it on MSNBC. This is an entrepreneurial insurgency.’ He was kicking the ball around. He wants everyone involved. If there's an amendment, he told us to offer it. If you have 48 seconds for YouTube, get it up there. Get busy and resist in every instance

The Kick A** GOP lives!

23 posted on 01/30/2009 12:03:34 PM PST by WOSG (Oppose the bailouts, boondoggles, big Government -)
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To: NTHockey

“When you have to depend on polling to tell you what to do, you are truly a lost soul. “

Oh come on, cut them some slack. They made the decision EARLIER to oppose the bill, before the polls turned. And then *during* the votes they get polling data telling them THEIR OPPOSITION TO THE BILL resonated.

This is just good news all around. Give the GOP credit for doing the right thing.


24 posted on 01/30/2009 12:06:53 PM PST by WOSG (Oppose the bailouts, boondoggles, big Government -)
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To: worst-case scenario
It’s a damn good thing that the stimulus bill won’t do anything at all to help the economic situation, otherwise the GOP refusal to vote for it because of their personal dislike of one man might be seen as extremely short-sighted.

So says John Batchelor, and only John Batchelor. So then, so say you?

25 posted on 01/30/2009 12:08:55 PM PST by browardchad
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To: WOSG

“The Kick A** GOP lives!”

Sorry to rain on your parade, but that’s not the case. These are the same spineless souls they’ve always been. As another poster pointed out, the Republicans used Emanuel as their focus, and waited for polls showing declining public support before they dug in.

The reason for this show of spine? The Republicans are the minority and wish to be the majority.

What happens if/when the Republicans regain the minority? Without conviction, or principles, they will follow polls and kiss up to the MSM to try to keep their jobs.

MOTS - More Of The Same


26 posted on 01/30/2009 12:10:11 PM PST by brownsfan (We are sooooo screwed.)
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To: lewisglad

Rahm hates us and lets us know it, and we hate him back,” said a senior Republican......

Good!.....Go to hell Rahmie!


27 posted on 01/30/2009 12:10:44 PM PST by AngelesCrestHighway
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To: Major Matt Mason

There’s still room under the bus.


28 posted on 01/30/2009 12:17:29 PM PST by bossmechanic (If all else fails, hit it with a hammer)
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To: lewisglad

“voted against 4 million jobs.”

Good luck with that one Rahm. The stimulus will pass and jobs will continue to decline because of it. You bought it, you own it Rahm.


29 posted on 01/30/2009 12:20:52 PM PST by FastCoyote (I am intolerant of the intolerable.)
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To: Hardastarboard

I am starting to really like these Repubs.

“...we hate him back.”


30 posted on 01/30/2009 12:28:03 PM PST by Frantzie
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To: lewisglad

“It turned out that this estimate was 1,000 percent too high, ....”

Just to be persnickety — it was an infinite percentage too high.


31 posted on 01/30/2009 12:28:18 PM PST by USFRIENDINVICTORIA
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To: bossmechanic

Better get a bigger bus; they’re gonna need more room if this keeps up!


32 posted on 01/30/2009 12:28:29 PM PST by pingman (Damn the parasites, full speed ahead!)
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To: browardchad

I don’t think that it is the sole reason. But Batchelor’s article makes it sound like the GOP is a bunch of 12 year olds who are having a playground feud - irresponsible.

He is not doing the Republicans any favors by publishing this stuff - at least not with Americans who are more interested in the economy and their financial situation than in Rahm Emanuel.


33 posted on 01/30/2009 12:32:23 PM PST by worst-case scenario (Striving to reach the light)
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To: Knitebane
"He's a puppet for the same people he's always been a puppet for. The Chicago machine."

Strings pulled and honeypot sweetened by George Soros.

34 posted on 01/30/2009 12:34:03 PM PST by redhead (Don't look at ME! I voted for Sarah!)
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To: numberonepal
Who the hell is in charge here?

Silly question.

35 posted on 01/30/2009 12:37:44 PM PST by They'reGone2000 (<--- Forwarding address: Galt's Gulch)
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To: ExTexasRedhead

Karma’s a beeeyotch! ping...


36 posted on 01/30/2009 12:41:19 PM PST by Albion Wilde ("Praise and worship" is my alternate lifestyle.)
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To: zot; Interesting Times

Hopefully the House Repubs will hang together and perhaps the SenateCritters will find some courage to do the same.


37 posted on 01/30/2009 12:42:26 PM PST by GreyFriar (Spearhead (3rd Armored Division 75-78 & 83-87))
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To: mo

#17. You are exactly correct. Even when the GOP leadership gets something right they do it for all the wrong reasons. I honestly do not see much hope for the Republican Party as presently constituted except as a mostly white southern splinter party.


38 posted on 01/30/2009 12:43:12 PM PST by mono
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To: Knitebane

“you think a no-talent clown-shoes like The Zero”

Come on! The Prefident One wears regular shoes! Here they are!
http://www.spearshoes.com/scallops.html


39 posted on 01/30/2009 12:44:04 PM PST by Dr. Bogus Pachysandra ("Don't touch that thing! I'm a doctor, and I won't touch that thing!)
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To: musicman

That picture should be mandatory in every thread that mentions rahm .


40 posted on 01/30/2009 12:47:52 PM PST by Deetes (God Bless the Troops)
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To: lewisglad

One word for Rahm- PUNK


41 posted on 01/30/2009 12:51:31 PM PST by mojitojoe
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To: sauropod

home


42 posted on 01/30/2009 1:00:09 PM PST by sauropod (An expression of deep worry and concern failed to cross either of Zaphod's faces - hitchhiker's guid)
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To: GreyFriar

Thanks for the ping. I’m glad the Pubs stayed together, but as this vote shows, it doesn’t really matter because the Rats have an overwhelming majority in the House of Representatives.


43 posted on 01/30/2009 1:07:00 PM PST by zot
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To: lewisglad
“Rahm hates us and lets us know it, and we hate him back,” said a senior Republican. “If we had gotten together in a room and tried to write a bill that put the taxpayer together with the Republican Party, we could not have come up with this thing. It is too unbelievable.”

OK, that's very nice.

The really importan question, though, is whether or not Republicans can figure out what we stand for, and then figure out how to communicate it effectively to the taxpayers.

We've already been down the wrong path with this sort of thing with Newt Gingrich's "Contract for America."

Regardless of what it was meant to be, it ended up being little more than a lightning rod for what we were opposed to, where Bill Clinton was concerned. Clinton's mistakes, and Democrat hubris, led to the Republican victories in '94 -- the Contract fed voter disgust with the ruling party.

But -- and we forget this at our peril -- Bill Clinton went on to use the Contract fact to feed Gingrich his own teeth. Clinton's re-election was primarily enabled by Mr. Gingrich's inept attempts to force the Contract through, and by the Republicans' inability to convince the voters that it meant anything positive.

44 posted on 01/30/2009 1:18:23 PM PST by r9etb
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To: worst-case scenario
I don’t think that it is the sole reason.

Neither do I.

He is not doing the Republicans any favors by publishing this stuff - at least not with Americans who are more interested in the economy and their financial situation than in Rahm Emanuel.

Agreed. Emanuel's acknowledged to be obnoxious, and possibly playing good-cop/bad-cop for his boss, but in the long run, who cares? It's the result that counts.

Batchelor's trying to feed some unsourced gossip into the mill -- the situation's a bit too grim for that silliness.

45 posted on 01/30/2009 1:39:25 PM PST by browardchad
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To: lewisglad

Soon, 0bama will realize that success while having Rahm E on his team is like scoring on a first date with a parasitic twin hanging bareass from your cheek.


46 posted on 01/30/2009 1:43:06 PM PST by 668 - Neighbor of the Beast (American Revolution II, overdue.)
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To: Major Matt Mason
Maybe the Chicago machine told BHO to pick Rahm as his chief of staff.

It would be nice if Blagojevich brought Rahm down, but I'm not counting on it.

47 posted on 01/30/2009 1:48:40 PM PST by Verginius Rufus
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To: lewisglad
Here's the Chicago enforcer in the WH.

Obama's COS, Rahm Emanuel, pledging allegiance to the USA on inaguration day.

48 posted on 01/30/2009 1:57:03 PM PST by Liz (The right to be left alone is the beginning of freedom. USSC Justice William O. Douglas)
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To: lewisglad
Now that he’s Obama’s chief of staff, the Republicans have him to poke at for at least four years.

Wanna bet?

49 posted on 01/30/2009 1:57:16 PM PST by Billthedrill
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To: lewisglad
"The dream of post-partisanship did not last one vote in the Congress."

Hope.

Change.

Now what Zero?

50 posted on 01/30/2009 2:03:22 PM PST by Uncle Miltie (Dissent is Patriotic. Palin 2012!)
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