“Sources” are beginning to talk about the details of Rahm Emanuel’s conversations with Rod Blagojevich, in this case to the Chicago Sun-Times.
From the Sun-Times:
President-elect Barack Obama’s incoming chief of staff, Rahm Emanuel, was pushing for Obama’s successor just days after the Nov. 4 election, sources told the Chicago Sun-Times.
Emanuel privately urged Gov. Blagojevich’s administration to appoint Obama confidante Valerie Jarrett, and the Sun-Times learned Tuesday that he also pressed that it be done by a certain deadline.
Sources told the Sun-Times that Emanuel urged Blagojevich’s administration to select President-elect Barack Obama’s Senate replacement by a certain deadline.
The disclosure comes days after Obama’s camp downplayed Jarrett’s interest in the post.
At one point, an “emissary” who said he represented Jarrett had discussions with Blagojevich chief of staff John Harris and the governor about naming Jarrett to the post, according to a criminal complaint.
In addition to the discussions, Emanuel submitted a list of names of candidates suitable to the Obama team to the governor’s administration. Jarrett was not among those names because she had pulled herself out of the running at that point, a source with the Obama camp said.
Unless we are to believe that Emanuel pressed Blago on his own, then the headline should read Obama pressed Blago on behalf of Jarrett. If Emanuel acted on his own accord, then he should be replaced as CoS. If Obama was being briefed and giving direction, then he should take responsibility for the actions of his right hand man. Thus far, it appears that those actions were appropriate. However, they are in contrast to the picture painted by Mr. Obama about his involvement in the Senate pick.
There are a couple of conversations in the criminal complaint (re: getting Mrs. B on some boards, and another about Emanuel’s 5th District Congressional seat) of some concern and may be someone other than Emanuel. However, if either of them involve someone on the Obama team, then the story will take a new direction.