Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel is said by well-connected Democrats to be considering the idea of running for president if Hillary Clinton opts out of the 2016 race.
The 53-year-old Emanuel, who is busy raising money for his 2015 reelection campaign in the Windy City, has had discussions both over the phone and face to face in the past month with Democratic Party donors and fundraisers about a possible White House run, according to sources.
It’s unclear who raised the subject—Emanuel or the donors—and the mayor’s press secretary initially didn’t offer clarity on who said what to whom. Hours after this story was published, however, Tarah Cooper emailed denying that the mayor “raised or entertained” the subject of a White House run. She also sent a photo of Emanuel’s scrawl on yellow legal paper vowing “not ever” to run “for another office” and reiterated his longstanding pledge that, in his words, he’s “not interested. Not going to do it. No. I’ll do it in Hebrew: lo.” (Emanuel, the son of an Israeli doctor, had dual citizenship until he was 18.) Others expressed skepticism that any such discussions between Emanuel and donors could have been serious.