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Emanuel’s race record could derail attempt to join Biden admin


Joe Biden considers Rahm Emanuel for secretary of Transportation but will accusations he covered up Chicago police shooting death of black teenager Laquan McDonald in 2014 scupper his chances?

  • Former Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel is being considered for President-elect Joe Biden’s Transportation secretary 
  • However, progressives including Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez have already signaled Emanuel’s record on race makes him a non-starter 
  • Emanuel was accused of covering up the 2014 police shooting of black teenager Laquan McDonald, with the dashcam footage released after Emanuel’s election 

By Nikki Schwab, Senior U.s. Political Reporter For

Published: | Updated:

Former Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel is being considered for President-elect Joe Biden‘s Transportation secretary, but his racial justice record will have progressives mad with that pick. 

Fox News Channel pointed out Sunday that detractors will point to the 2014 police shooting of Laquan McDonald, a black teenager, which Emanuel’s administration was accused of covering up so he could be elected for a second term. 

One of Capitol Hill’s top progressives, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, already warned The New York Times earlier this month that she’d be against Emanuel joining the new Democratic administration. 

Rahm Emanuel, the former mayor of Chicago who served in the Clinton and Obama administrations, is being considered for President-elect Joe Biden’s secretary of Transportation, but progressives don’t like his record on racial justice 

The October 2014 murder of Laquan McDonald will likely come back to haunt Emanuel, whose administration was accused of burying the dashcam footage of the shooting in order to help Emanuel secure a second term in office 

President-elect Joe Biden is expected to announce some of the new members of his cabinet on Tuesday, before the Thanksgiving holiday, while President Donald Trump continues to refuse to concede the election 

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, one of the most vocal progressive members of Congress, already warned that a pick like Emanuel wouldn’t fly, calling him ‘divisive’ and ‘hostile’ to the grassroots 

‘Someone like Rahm Emanuel would be a pretty divisive pick,’ she told The Times. 

Ocasio-Cortez pointed to Emanuel’s record on racial justice and his opposition of teachers’ unions.

‘And it would signal, I think, a hostile approach to the grassroots and the progressive wing of the party,’ she added. 

CNN reported Thursday that Emanuel was under consideration for the role and had also expessed interest in it. 

Sources told the network the Emanuel played up both his executive and legislative branch experience. 

Emanuel was a member of Congress before he was tapped to be President Barack Obama’s first chief of staff. 

He also worked in the Clinton White House. 

Emanual quit the Obama White House to run for Chicago mayor. 

Emanuel pulled out of running for a third term for mayor in the aftermath of McDonald’s murder. 

An inspector general report showed that at least 16 officers were involved in the cover-up of the shooting. 

Emanuel’s administration was accused of withholding the dashcam footage of the incident from the public so the mayor could win re-election in 2015. 

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti is also being considered to run the Transportation Department, CNN reported.        

Jen Psaki, a senior adviser to the Biden-Harris transition team, tweeted Sunday that the president-elect would be naming some of his cabinet picks Tuesday. 

‘It’s Tuesday for cabinet announcement. We aren’t going to mess with anyone’s turkey and football,’ she tweeted to CNN’s Jake Tapper, after appearing on his show.  


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