As everyone in this country knows, it’s hard not being as fun and interesting as Rahm Emanuel. But at least you’re not Bill Daley, who was brought in to replace Rahmbo as White House Chief of Staff last year. The former Clinton commerce secretary, longtime JPMorgan executive, and Chicago political scion was hired to lend “corporate-world experience and adult supervision” to Obama’s “young, free-wheeling” staff, which is not exactly the best way to become anyone’s Prom King. Reportedly, Daley’s decision to play to his strengths has proved particularly unappealing to Hill Democrats, who have found themselves missing Emanuel’s signature style:
[Daley has not] gone out of his way to send come-hither messages to the faithful: The door to his expansive West Wing office is almost always closed; Emanuel’s was always open — even if staffers were often afraid to cross the threshold.
“He’s not a fan favorite,” added a former White House staffer who said Daley’s been more intent “on controlling the outflow and the inflow from the Oval” than energizing a staff besieged by bad news and the late 2010 organizational shakeup.
Some are especially annoyed by Daley’s willingness to compromise with Republicans, as opposed to cursing at them until they lock themselves in the bathroom to cry:
He routinely reminds GOP leaders how his business background colors his politics, trying to get across the message that he’s not so different from them.”He constantly feels the need to tell [House Speaker John] Boehner and [Majority Leader Eric] Cantor that he agrees with us on regulations,” said one House Republican aide. “It’s almost an obsession.”
Of course, these feelings could possibly just be a result of nostalgia during a tough year for Democrats. After all, no one is ever happy with what they have, and Emanuel’s new staff in Chicago are reportedly “terrified” of and “exhausted” by his antics. Said one administration official, “I think after Rahm left, Rahm became much more beloved on the Hill than he was when he was here … It was just a different time.” Sigh.