Add Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel to the growing list of lawmakers who are endorsing Hillary Clinton for president in 2016.
On Friday morning, the former White House chief of staff under President Obama, announced his support for Clinton, who insists she’s still “thinking” about running. Emanuel will speak at two Windy City fundraisers in June on behalf of super political action committee Ready for Hillary.
“Hillary is smart, she’s determined, and most importantly, she is a champion for the American people,” said Emanuel in a statement. He added: “I’m proud to make my support for her official, and I’m even prouder to join more than two million Americans encouraging her to run.”
Emanuel, who also served as a senior adviser to President Bill Clinton and went on to hold a seat in Congress, endorsed Obama over Hillary Clinton in the bruising 2008 presidential primary.
The mayor said when he worked with the former secretary of state in the White House he saw what an “effective leader” she was. He added: “I’ve seen firsthand how Hillary has inspired women and men, and girls and boys, here in America and across the globe, and I know that as president, she would continue to move our country forward.”
Several other Democratic allies have already begun to rally around Hillary Clinton, including Sen. Tim Kaine of Virginia (who endorsed Obama in 2008) last weekend. Kaine, a former governor and Democratic National Committee chairman, is considered by some politicos as a possible vice presidential pick, should the former first lady run.
In June 2013, Sen. Claire McCaskill of Missouri (who also backed Obama in 2008) became the first sitting member of Congress to endorse Hillary Clinton. Sen. Chuck Schumer of New York followed suit in November of 2013. Schumer, Hillary Clinton’s former colleague in the upper chamber of Congress, made the endorsement announcement at an Iowa Democratic Party dinner, declaring: “It’s time for a woman to be president.” And last fall, all of the Democratic women in the Senate signed a letter privately urging Clinton to run.
Ready For Hillary has raised more than $5.75 million since it launched a little over a year ago. Opposition to Team Hillary is already building up as well.
Clinton, who is the clear front runner to be the party’s standard-bearer in 2016, said last month that she’s thinking about running. The former secretary of state added quickly, “But I am going to continue to think about it for a while.”
The Republican field is far less certain. A new Washington Post-ABC News poll shows five potential candidates within four percentage points of one another. That includes former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul each with 14% support followed by former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee (13%), Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan (11%) and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (10%).
And in a hypothetical Bush versus Clinton matchup, Hillary Clinton would beat Bush 53% to 41%, according to the survey.
The presidential election is 914 days away.