It was there that Emanuel, then Clinton's chief fund-raiser, repaired with George Stephanopoulos, Mandy Grunwald and other aides to Doe's, the campaign hangout. Revenge was heavy in the air as the group discussed the enemies - Democrats, Republicans, members of the press - who wronged them during the 1992 campaign.I like it, not only since Emanuel's selection means that the White House might see fewer prayer meetings and more profanity, but also since it signals that this administration might actually be serious about getting things done.
Suddenly Emanuel grabbed his steak knife and, as those who were there remeber it, shouted out the name of another enemy, lifted the knife, then brought it down with full force into the table.
''Dead!'' he screamed.
The group immediately joined in the cathartic release: ''Nat Landow! Dead! Cliff Jackson! Dead! Bill Schaefer! Dead!''
Emanuel grew up in Wilmette, a suburb of Chicago, and he now represents the 5th Illinois Congressional District, which includes much of Chicago's north side. (And which is almost-but-not-quite adjacent to the 13th district, where your humble narrator spent his formative years and -- somewhat before that -- where Donald Rumsfeld's illustrious political career was launched.)
There are worse things than having someone with Emanuel's background and temperament on your side when you want to accomplish something:
A knack for toughness seems to run in the family:
The Boys [Rahm and his brother Ari] went to summer camp in Israel, and reveled in the family lore: in 1933, after their uncle Emanuel Auerbach was killed in a skirmish with Arabs in Jerusalem, the family changed its last name to his first, as a tribute. Political passions always ran deep. [Rahm] still remembers the time his mother and her father got into such a furious argument at the dinner table over Henry Wallace and the 1948 split of the Democratic Party - a quarter century after the fact - that father threw daughter out of the house. ''And it was her house,'' Rahm says. ''I thought, 'This is nutty.' ''Indeed.
See also comments at Jewcy.