Hope in the White House | Bleader

Hope in the White House



Here's a couple of things you need to know about Valerie Jarrett, based on Robert Draper's glowing profile in Sunday's New York Times Magazine.

Number one: She apparently has big-time influence over Obama, almost on a par with the power Angela Lansbury had over Laurence Harvey in the original Manchurian Candidate.

As one aide told Draper: "If you want him [President Obama] to do something, there are two people he's not going to say no to: Valerie Jarrett and Michelle Obama."

Here's another quote from an unidentified source: "She and [David] Axelrod are the two he's closest to but in very different ways. He gets brilliant political advice from David, and from Valerie he gets wisdom."

Number two: Jarrett still fervently supports the Olympics. So much for the wisdom. I guess you can take a strategist away from Mayor Daley but you can't take Mayor Daley away from the strategist—or something like that.

Since Obama represents Daley's best hopes for getting the games, this means that sometime in late September Jarrett will probably call President Obama in for a private meeting and flash him the queen of diamonds, much like Lansbury would do to Harvey. At which point the president will drop everything he's doing and catch the next plane to Copenhagen, where he will dutifully woo the International Olympic Committee on behalf of Mayor Daley.

In short, we're doomed.

But wait—there's hope. If Michelle Obama really does have the most pull with the president, maybe she can break Jarrett's spell and save her hometown from bankruptcy.

I know—it's a long shot. But long shots are all we've got.