Rahm Emanuel, the former White House chief of staff who’s now mayor of Chicago, defended President Barack Obama’s record on Sunday, saying his former boss made a series of unpopular decisions that will ultimately benefit the country.
“I often advised the president about doing the quick political thing, and he looked at the long term, and he rejected the quick and political because it was in America’s interest,” Emanuel said on NBC’s “Meet the Press,” referring to health care and financial reforms.
Ultimately, Emanuel said, the 2012 election will come down to a contrast between Obama and the GOP nominee. “There would not be an auto industry if Mitt Romney was president. He would have said, ‘Let it go bankrupt,'” Emanuel said.
Asked how much trouble Obama is facing heading into 2012, the mayor said: “There is no doubt there is a challenge politically because the economy is not where the American middle class needs it to be for their bottom line.”
Asked if Obama should be accountable for that, Emanuel said, “all of us” should be responsible, referring to members of Congress, the administration and the corporate world.