Rahm Emanuel on Why He’s Endorsing Hillary Clinton Over Biden in 2016

May 9, 2014 9:14am

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, who ultimately backed President Obama in 2008 despite his close ties to the Clinton family, has no reservations for the 2016 cycle.

The former adviser to President Bill Clinton and former chief of staff to President Obama will be headlining two fundraisers in early June for “Ready for Hillary,” the grassroots Super PAC urging Hillary Clinton to run for president announced today.

While Emanuel has publicly said he would support Clinton if she runs, this will be his first time officially fund-raising on her behalf.

In 2008, then-Congressman Emanuel, D-Ill., embarrassingly refrained from endorsing either of his close friends, Obama or Clinton, until nearly the end of the primary, eventually backing Obama just three days before Clinton suspended her campaign.

Emanuel is much more confident about where his allegiance lies for 2016. When asked about his other friend Vice President Biden as a potential presidential candidate, Emanuel gave reasons why Clinton was his top pick.

“Joe’s a good friend, personally. He’s obviously worthy of being considered because he’s a great vice president, a great senator, has something to offer. I just indicate where I stand on that,” Emanuel said in an interview with ABC News’ Jim Avila for the ABC-Yahoo digital video series “Power Players.”

“There’s no doubt the vice president has been a tremendous vice president and has a great amount of experience. In this case, so does the former secretary of state, senator, and first lady,” Emanuel added, referring to his support for Hillary Clinton.

Vice President Biden has previously said Hillary Clinton’s running would not affect his own decision to run.

For a “whole host of reasons,” Emanuel said he believes Clinton will win if she does run, citing demographic trends and her “incredible Chicago-area work ethic.”

Emanuel would not say whether he has spoken to Clinton about her potential campaign, but acknowledged some of the factors she is likely considering when mulling her decision.

“There’s a lot of things that go on in people’s lives,” he said, referring to the soul-searching all candidates must do when they face re-election.

“She’s about to be a grandmother, and I know she cares about that, and making sure she has the time. Being a congressman, being a mayor, being a president, being a candidate for president. Time is not one of the commodities you have a lot of, so there’s a lot that goes on.”

Emanuel’s official endorsement for Clinton comes one week after Virginia Sen. Tim Kaine announced his support for the former secretary of state and the “Ready for Hillary” movement.

The two fundraising events will be June 5 at a location to be determined in Chicago. Tickets range from the group’s symbolic price tag of $20.16 to $500, according to the invitation.

 

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                (Photo Credit: Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images)

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