Emanuel Will Leave Congress Friday

By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 29, 2008 4:19 PM CST
Emanuel and Gov. Rod Blagojevich.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – Rahm Emanuel’s transformation from Congressman to White House chief of staff is almost complete, the Chicago Tribune reports. Emanuel sent a letter to Gov. Rod Blagojevich today stating his intention to resign his seat on Friday. Blagojevich has no power to appoint Emanuel’s successor; rather, he has 5 days to set a date for a special election, which must occur within 115 days of the creation of the vacancy.

Emanuel’s letter to the disgraced governor was personal and did not mention the scandal over Barack Obama’s vacant Senate seat. “As sons of immigrants to this country,” he wrote, “you and I have a deep appreciation for the opportunities America provides.” A crowd of Chicago pols is already lined up to fill Emanuel’s seat, which Blagojevich once held.