*President Obama called Rahm Emanuel, his former White House chief of staff, on Monday after an Illinois appellate court declared him ineligible to appear on the mayoral ballot because he does not meet the city’s residency requirement.
On Tuesday morning, Mr. Obama sent senior adviser Valerie Jarrett out on the television circuit, where she told an ABC interviewer that the president “believes that [Emanuel is] eligible.”
Emanuel grabbed the baton from his former boss. His lawyers invoked Obama’s name repeatedly in legal briefs filed Tuesday with the Illinois Supreme Court, arguing that the appellate ruling would also make the president ineligible to run for a city office in his home town. And Emanuel told supporters that he was inspired to push ahead by the president’s history of ignoring critics in the “birther” movement.
“I worked for a president that has been told he’s not from this country,” Emanuel told supporters Tuesday morning, according to a person who attended the event. He added: “You never get distracted by the noise.”
The case could be resolved as soon as Wednesday. The state Supreme Court on Tuesday agreed to hear Emanuel’s appeal. It issued an order putting the appellate ruling on hold and ordered that for now no ballots be printed without Emanuel’s name on them.
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