Chicago mayor Rahm Emanuel, who announced he will not seek another term in September, is considering turning to cable news punditry when he leaves office in January.
Emanuel is being represented by his brother Ari Emanuel’s talent agency, William Morris Endeavor, and has met in recent weeks with top executives from MSNBC and CNN, the Daily Beast reported Tuesday.
Emanuel’s communications director Adam Collins denied that the outgoing mayor is devoting time to his future professional plans, insisting instead that he is focused entirely on the business of running Chicago.
“The mayor is focused on his job, and just today we sued eight online e-cigarette online retailers who are selling to minors, and cracked down on dozens of others,” Collins said. “That’s what he’s devoting his time and energy to. He’ll turn his attention to post-mayoral opportunities when he’s done.”
Emanuel, a former congressman and chief of staff to president Barack Obama, raised over $10 million toward his reelection campaign before announcing that he would not pursue another term. The announcement came as Emanuel’s popularity, particularly among African Americans, plummeted over his handling of the investigation into the death of LaQuan McDonald.
McDonald, 17, was shot 16 times by a white police officer in 2015. The killing sparked weeks of raucous protest in downtown Chicago. Anger over McDonald’s death was later exacerbated by allegations that Emanuel’s city hall conspired to keep surveillance footage of the incident from public view. The Department of Justice launched an investigation into the Emanuel’s handling of the incident and found that top officials did indeed work to keep the video secret.
The officer, Jason Van Dyke, was convicted of second-degree murder early last month.