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Good morning everybody.
Good morning everybody had welcome to the league -- -- announcement of all time.
As almost all of you have reported.
My chief of staff.
Rahm Emanuel has informed me that he will be leaving his post today to.
Explore other opportunities it.
-- this is.
Day here at the White House.
On the one hand we are all.
Very excited for -- as he takes on a new challenge.
For which -- is extraordinarily well -- We're also losing.
-- incomparable leader of our staff.
And one who we are gonna miss very much.
When I first started assembling this administration.
I knew we were about to face some of the most difficult years this country has seen in generations.
The challenges were bad and the margin for error was small.
An economy on the Brinks of collapse.
And so tough choices.
About issues that we've put off for decades choices about health care and energy.
How -- rebuild a middle class that have been struggling.
For far too long and I knew that I needed somebody at my thought why could count -- day and night.
To help get the job.
In my mind there was no candidate.
For the job of chief staff who would meet the bill as well.
As Rahm Emanuel.
And that's why I told them that he had no choice.
In the matter.
He was not allowed to say no.
It wasn't just roms.
Broad array of experiences.
And congressman the White House and politics and in business.
It was also the fact that he just brings an unmatched level of energy and enthusiasm.
And commitment to every single thing that he does.
This was a great sacrifice for rum.
In the in the family.
To move out -- -- gave up one of the most powerful.
Positions on Capitol Hill to do this.
And in the last forty months Rahm has exceeded all my expectations.
It's fair to say that we could not have accomplished.
What we've accomplished without -- leadership.
From preventing a second depression.
Passing historic health care financial reform legislation to restore America's leadership.
In the world.
For -- two years I've begun my work day with law.
I have ended my work day with the wrong.
Much -- -- your grandma I've intruded.
On his life at almost any hour of the day.
Any day of the week we -- just enormous challenges.
His -- had all his advice has always been Camden.
His opinions have always been insightful.
His commitment to his job has always been heartfelt.
One a passionate desire to move this country forward and lift up the lives of the middle class.
People were struggling to get there.
He has been a great friend of -- And will continue to be a great friend of -- he has been a selfless public servant.
He has been an outstanding chief of staff.
I will miss him dearly as will members of my staff and cabinet.
With whom he's worked so closely and so what.
I don't think anybody would disagree that Romney is one of -- kind.
I am very fortunate.
To be able to hand the baton to.
-- wires skillful and longtime counselor.
-- -- Pete who has more than thirty years of experience in public service.
Will serve as interim chief of staff as we enter the next phase of our administration.
Many of you remember -- as the top aide to then senator.
Senate majority leader Tom Daschle.
He was affectionately known as via a 101 senator.
From the moment I became -- US -- he's been one of my closest and most essential advisors.
He was my chief of staff in the senate he helped orchestrate and advise my presidential campaign.
He has served as one of my senior advisor secure the White House.
And in that role he's taken on a series of management and legislative challenges what is customary clarity and common purpose.
There -- there is a shame around the White House.
Let's let Pete fix.
And he does.
Pete's known -- straight skillful problem solver and the good news for him is that we have plenty of problems assault.
So I am extraordinarily grateful to him that he's agreed to serve.
As -- -- chief of staff and I look forward very much to working with him in this new role.
These two gentlemen have slightly different styles.
I mentions for example I.
This is a couple of years ago I pointed out that.
From when he was a kid had lost part of this finger an accident and it was middle finger so -- rendered him mute.
-- -- Has never seen a microphone or a TV camera that he likes.
And -- there's something in common here.
You know as president of the United States.
You get both the credit and the blame for what happens around here and the blame is usually deserve it.
Or at least I happily accept it because that comes with the territory.
Put the credit.
Really goes to the men and women who work.
In this bill.
It goes to people like Rahm and Pete.
And the hundreds of others who are here today.
Get some attention sometimes don't.
But these are folks who give up incredibly lucrative opportunities -- sacrifice.
And their families sacrifice.
They come here every day.
To do the best possible job on behalf of the American people.
And oftentimes they don't get the things that they deserve.
There is your president can as a fellow American.
I wanna take this moment to say it all the staff.
All the cabinet members how proud I am of you and how grateful I am you.
And to help particularly proud and grateful I am to my outgoing chief of staff from man.
Slightly different reception than I got my permit stuff.
Thank you Mr.
President for those generous words the more importantly.
Thanks for your warm friendship.
And the opportunity to serve you and our country in such consequential times.
-- this to say this is a bittersweet day for me to.
On the one hand I'm excited to be heading home to Chicago.
Which is you know very well Mr.
President is the greatest city in the greatest country.
I'm energized by the prospect of new challenges.
And -- you to see what I can do to make our hometown even greater.
These are unprecedented.
And great times in Chicago.
The Chicago Bears are screens are.
I'm also set to lead you the vice president.
-- terrific colleagues here at the White House the cabinet and so many friends on both sides of Pennsylvania Avenue.
With whom -- worked as chief of staff and as a member of congress.
It's been a robot profound privilege to work for in with you Mr.
President I -- you confront some of the toughest challenges.
Of our time and you've done it -- unfailing grace.
You have a tough.
You have the guts to make it tough calls.
That stopped the freefall and save your country from second Great Depression you've taken on some of the most powerful interest in this town.
To stand up for the American people.
And you've been willing to challenge the worn out ideas.
And the stale thinking.
That often stands in the way of progress.
I thought I was stuff.
There's someone who saw firsthand how close our nation came to the brink and what you had to do to put America back on track.
I want to thank you for being the toughest leader.
Any country could ask -- in the toughest times any president has ever faced.
And even on the hardest days he never lost focus on why we're here.
Not just to score political points.
But to solve problems.
Not just win the next election but to make a difference for the next generation.
I served you Mr.
President as a member of your staff.
But I also observed you as a friend.
I've seen what -- are privileged to see.
The father whose heart breaks when he writes a letter to parents.
Whose son or daughter has been lost on the field of honor.
The man of -- quiet.
Who always appeals to the better angels of our nature.
And the proud product of the American dream.
Who sees in the -- of economic statistics.
That child who struggles.
And the single parent with limited income but unlimited potential.
You have -- that American dream Mr.
As -- my father.
My grandfather came to this country for opportunity.
They came here.
For better life for their children.
My mother marched with Martin Luther King.
Because she believed.
-- none of us this truly free.
Until all of us are.
Both my parents raised me to give something back to the country.
And the community that has given us so much.
And I want to thank you.
For the opportunity to repay.
In a small portion of the blessings this country has given my family.
I give you my word.
And even as I leave the White House I will never leave that spirit of service behind.
Now because my -- and sometimes a bit different than years Mr.
I want to thank my colleagues for your patience.
The last few years that you have shown.
I'm -- I'm sure you've learned.
Some words that you've never heard before and in any and in an assortment of combinations before.
What we learned together was what a -- a tireless talented committed people can achieve together.
And as difficult as it is to leave.
I do so with a great comfort of knowing that Pete Rouse will be there to be the operation forward.
From the moment I arrived and -- -- right.
Pete has been a good friend with great judgment.
He commands the respect of everyone in this building and brings decades of experience.
To this assignment.
I want to think my wife Amy.
And -- three remarkable children and -- Lama and lay up.
Without whose love and support none of this would have been possible.
I hope to end this soon so they can -- get back to school today and -- their exams.
Thank you and thank you all I look forward to seeing you in Chicago.
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