President Barack Obama returns to Chicago next week for local 2012 campaign love.
In the meantime, Mayor Rahm Emanuel has his former boss' back.
Emanuel said Wednesday he was watching the Bulls game when Mitt Romney edged Rick Santorum by eight votes during Iowa's Republican caucuses. But when it comes down to it, Obama's former chief of staff says it doesn't matter who Republicans pick to oppose the president.
"Regardless in my view who the Republicans nominate, the President of the United States in my view has a strong case to make about his fight on behalf of the middle class and on behalf of Americans and their future," Emanuel said Wednesday during an unrelated news conference.
Emanuel pointed to the war in Iraq, universal health care, the capture of Osama bin Laden and reforms to education as talking points headed into the election.
"That was a change a lot of us wanted to see, a lot of us fought for, and that is a change that he delivered," Emanuel repeated.
For Team Obama's part, David Axelrod on Wednesday belittled the "great enthusiasm" for Republicans of Iowa, pointing out Romney actually received six fewer votes than he did four years ago.
Obama lands in the Windy City on Jan. 11.