Talk about a guy who could pick a fight in a phone booth—if there were phone booths anymore . . .
On today's Daily Rundown, in a conversation about charter schools, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel repeatedly insulted host Chuck Todd, suggesting he was ignorant about charter schools, was "backward" looking, and that being in Washington had affected "your brain." Todd generally took it in stride, but after one insult couldn't suppress a "wow" of amazement at Rahm's rudeness. View the video after the jump.
Is Emanuel rude out of calculation, or can the guy just not help himself?
Note: as a matter of substance though not style, I side with Emanuel. Todd seemed to be hitting Rahm with teachers-union talking points.
TODD: In this debate over charter schools, what is the role of a charter school in a public school program, as far as you're concerned?
EMANUEL: My key word is choice, and making sure it's high quality.
TODD: [tries to follow up].
EMANUEL: Wait a second, Chuck. You asked the question. Let me finish. Because I think the debate in Washington is all wrong. And your question indicates a backward look to it.
. . .
TODD: My question on the charter issue is, a charter school can pick and choose their students. You know, you see these ratings of charter schools. They don't have to deal with special needs students. They can say no to students if they're potentially on the spectrum of autism and some things, and a regular public school cannot. So when resources get pulled away, how do you -- I guess, how do you deal with this to make sure a falling school doesn't lose students that can make it a better school?
EMANUEL: See, again, Chuck, I really do think you're kind of looking at this in the old debate.
. . .
TODD: Is this where public school is going, everything application-based? You have to apply to whatever school you want to go to?
EMANUEL: No. You know, Chuck, I'm going to get you a one-way ticket out of Washington. You need to get out of the thin air. It's affecting your brain.
. . .
TODD: Let me move to a couple of political questions, since I'm in the thin air of charter schools.
EMANUEL: No, no: you're in the thin air of Washington.
TODD: Fair enough.