Rahm Emanuel Jumps Obama's Ship (But He's Not the First ... Or the Last)

Julie Marsh

It's official: Rahm Emanuel has stepped down as White House Chief of Staff to run for mayor of Chicago. Obama aide Pete Rouse will serve as temporary replacement and has been named by Washington Post reporter Chris Cillizza as having had "the worst week in Washington."

I certainly wouldn't want the post either, but given the number of Obama administration appointees who've walked, I think a lot of people in Washington have had some pretty lousy weeks.


The Washington Post provided a long list of the casualties, including:

  • Lawrence Summers, National Economic Council
  • Christina Romer, Chair of the Council of Economic Advisers
  • General David McKiernan, commander in Afghanistan
  • General Stanley McChrystal, commander in Afghanistan
  • Ellen Moran, White House Communications Director
  • Gregory Craig, White House Counsel
  • Desiree Rogers, White House Social Secretary
  • Dennis C. Blair, National Intelligence Director
  • Peter Orszag, Director of the Office of Management and Budget

Deputy Chief of Staff Jim Messina and National Security Adviser James L. Jones are also expected to move on by the end of the year.

It's natural that people both in government and the private sector leave jobs and take new ones as they enter new stages of their lives and their priorities shift accordingly. However, I expect it must be difficult for an administration to manage the comings and goings of key personnel, particularly in areas that are of great concern to the public -- namely the economy and our military efforts in Afghanistan.

Has the Obama administration been affected more profoundly by turnover than previous administrations, or have they taken it in stride?

Read More