Rahm Emanuel, the embattled mayor of Chicago and former White House chief of staff, enjoyed a cozy relationship with Hillary Clinton even after departing the administration, emails show.
Despite coming under fire in recent days for allegedly delaying an investigation into the killing of a Chicago teenager, Emanuel said Wednesday he believes Clinton still supports his career.
"That question of whether I continue to have her support is up to her, but I feel pretty confident I do," Emanuel said during a Politico Playbook breakfast.
The newly re-elected mayor said he spoke to Clinton as recently as two weeks ago.
Emanuel was a polarizing figure in Washington before he left the White House in the fall of 2010 to run for mayor of Chicago. Notably for Clinton, he was the Obama administration official who reportedly nixed her request to hire Sidney Blumenthal, a longtime Clinton confidante.
Blumenthal went on to become an informal advisor to Clinton during all four years of her State Department tenure. Perhaps confirming Emanuel's fears, he was a frequent critic of administration officials, calling Emanuel's deputy Jim Messina a "dutiful dolt" in an email made public Monday.
The well-connected mayor invited Clinton to attend an event with key corporate executives within days of her departure from the State Department.
"Would love to host you here for a dinner with top business folks," Emanuel wrote to Clinton in Jan. 2013. "Please consider when you are up to it after a little decompression."
Clinton seemingly welcomed the invitation, promising to "see you in Chicago."
"Sorry we didn't meet up during the inaugural fun, but hope to see you soon after I leave State," Clinton said, referring to Obama's second inauguration earlier that month.
Clinton evidently kept tabs on Emanuel's Chicago race in 2010.
Betsy Ebeling, a childhood friend of Clinton's, passed the secretary of state press clips about Emanuel's mayoral bid.
Flagging a Chicago Tribune story about the top obstacles to Emanuel's campaign, Ebeling sent Clinton an email with the subject line, "Hmmmmmmm" in Nov. 2010.
Clinton's aides cribbed lines from Playbook, Politico's morning newsletter, that discussed Emanuel's career moves, sending them to Clinton directly.
In 2012, Clinton had to decline an invitation from Emanuel to appear alongside him at a corporate event with the founder of Groupon because she was scheduled for a conflicting trip to the Balkans. She told the mayor she "would love a rain check."
Emanuel now faces calls for his resignation thanks to the release last week of a dashboard-camera video showing a police shooting that claimed the life of 17-year-old Laquan McDonald in October of last year.
While the city had been under pressure to release the video for months, authorities did not do so until Nov. 24, only hours after the police officer in the video was charged with first-degree murder.
Critics are questioning whether Emanuel's government delayed releasing the footage and charging the officer involved until after his re-election. A close call in the February election forced him into a run-off in April, which he won.
Clinton has voiced her support for the Black Lives Matter movement that grew out of anger over similar police killings of unarmed black youth. That movement has staged protests across Chicago, some of which led to Emanuel's decision Tuesday to remove his police chief.