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Mayor honored that his brother tapped to be Obama chief of staff

Updated: January 6, 2011 1:23PM

Mayor Daley could hardly contain his glee when asked how it feels to be the brother of the White House chief of staff Thursday.

“I’m very honored that my brother. . .Is the news out already?” Daley hesitated.

Then the mayor laughed.

“There’s someone bigger than me in government. That’s the president. I’m not going to step on his toes. No way,” Daley said.

When told an official announcement about Bill Daley’s appointment was made, Daley said his younger brother will bring “passion and commitment” to the White House and a political pragmatism that is needed in wake of the Republican gains during in the mid-term elections.

“It doesn’t matter what political party they come from, we want to make sure that the president is successful,” Daley said.

“We are tired of partisan politics in Washington. And that is the message. Let’s get down to business, let’s roll up our sleeves, lets’ talk about after school programs, let’s talk about technology, let’s talk about jobs. And that’s what he’s [Bill Daley] going to get back to.”

The mayor called the 24-7 job a “great undertaking” and said his brother was excited about the challenge.

Asked if the appointment would mean more federal dollars to Chicago, Daley said, “I’m praying.”

But then he stopped himself and said, “No, no. It doesn’t.”The mayor scoffed at suggestion that Bill Daley will be part of the “Chicago mafia” surrounding President Obama.

He said the Chicagoans who surround Obama are no different than the Texans who surrounded both Bushes, the Georgia group that joined Jimmy Carter and Arkansas clique that accompanied Bill Clinton.

“Sure you do You bring people that you know and you can work with. There’s nothing wrong with that. Every president has done it,” the mayor said.

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