Rahm Emanuel To Seek Big-Dollar Donations For Democrats

Source: Tom Hamburger and Peter Wallsten / The Washington Post

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel — a legendary fundraiser and political strategist before he won elected office — has dropped his honorary chairmanship of the Obama campaign to help raise big-dollar contributions, so that Democrats can compete with what is emerging as a clear GOP fundraising advantage this election cycle, campaign and fundraising individuals said.

Emanuel started working with the pro-Obama super PAC Priorities USA in the last two weeks. News of the switch began circulating through Charlotte on Tuesday, as the Democratic National Convention was getting underway.

Emanuel said in a brief interview early Wednesday that he was “helping, not running” the super PAC. “It’s that simple. I’m going to help where I can to get the president re-elected. And this is where I can probably be most helpful in the final days.”

Democratic strategists said they have noted some reluctance among well-heeled Democrats to contribute big-dollar checks to super PACs, in part because Democrats, including Obama, were originally wary of these new entities. The move by Obama’s first White House chief of staff could change their mind-set, said David Rosen, a Democratic consultant who is at the convention and attending private sessions for donors and campaign insiders.

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