From mayor to media pundit, Emanuel joins ABC News, The Atlantic

Rahm Emanuel (Photo: ABC News)

Now that Rahm Emanuel is out of office, could we be seeing more of the former Chicago mayor than ever before?

One day after leaving City Hall, Emanuel was reported to have signed two national media deals — one with ABC News and another with The Atlantic.

Through a spokesman, Emanuel declined to comment on his fledgling career as a media pundit.

At ABC News, where he already has turned up several times on “This Week with George Stephanopoulos,” Emanuel is expected to serve as a paid contributor and appear as a political analyst on “Good Morning America,” according to The Daily Beast, which broke the news Tuesday.

The North Side Democrat, who earlier served as a U.S. congressman and President Barack Obama’s chief of staff, also marked his debut this week as a contributing editor for The Atlantic, with an essay titled: "It’s Time to Hold American Elites Accountable for Their Abuses," subtitled: "If Democrats want to address simmering middle-class anger, they need to deliver justice."

The Atlantic will be the “primary home for Emanuel’s writing,” according to the magazine, which said he would be contributing to the Ideas section. As mayor, he'd already written a dozen essays for it.

The magazine misidentified Emanuel as "the 44th mayor of Chicago," (instead of the 55th) — an error pointed out by Chicago journalist Mark Konkol who tweeted: "Will @TheAtlantic post job for a fact checker now that they've hired a politician with a reputation for distorting (and hiding) the truth as a contributing editor?"

Speculation first surfaced in November when The Daily Beast reported that Emanuel had met with top executives at MSNBC and CNN to discuss “a potential future as a cable news pundit.” He’s being represented by William Morris Endeavor, the talent agency where his brother Ari Emanuel is co-CEO.

As I noted at the time, Emanuel wouldn’t be the city’s first former mayor to try his hand as a TV pundit.

Thirty years ago, Jane Byrne, the first woman to serve as mayor of Chicago, signed on as a paid political analyst for WBBM-Channel 2. In 1989 the CBS-owned station hired her for $40,000 to make up to 10 appearances on the air.