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Emanuel Fights Back Rumors He's Headed for Chicago Mayor's Bid

WASHINGTON -- Despite efforts to quell persistent rumors, Rahm Emanuel found himself again batting down questions Monday about whether he will leave his post as President Obama's chief of staff to run for mayor of Chicago.

Appearing on MSNBC, Emanuel said that he is committed to staying with the administration through 2010. 

"Yes, I'm staying," he said, answering the question about his future head-on. 

"Listen, first of all, as I said, over the weekend, (Chicago Mayor) Rich Daley is a very, very dear friend of mine. Two is, I think he is a great mayor of a great city. Three, I would hope he seeks re-election, because I want him to continue to be a great mayor. And four, the reason I left Congress to join the president is because I think this is a historic time with great challenges and I was pleased to get offered to do this job," he said.

Daley, who has held the office since 1989, is up for re-election in 2011, unless he decides not to seek a seventh term. Emanuel has repeatedly been eyed as a potential successor.

Asked about Emanuel's plans, White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said Monday that "he committed (to MSNBC) to be here through 2010." Gibbs said he's not aware of any other high-level personnel changes coming.

Politico newspaper noted Monday that Emanuel may be settling in Washington since he's rented out his Chicago home and moved his wife to D.C. over the summer. His three children are also enrolled in local schools.