Barack Obama's political magic is based on an ever-growing bag of tricks, relying on illusion, misdirection, and the media's willingness to believe. Behind the stage presence of openness, bipartisanship, sincerity, transparency, and geniality are tricks learned from the hardball politics of Chicago.Every magician needs his stage assistants. Barack Obama has two key people helping to smooth his way: Rahm Emanuel and David Axelrod. Each knows plenty of tricks of his own.Rahm Emanuel was chosen by the chosen one to be his Chief of Staff -- a very astute pick indeed. Few realize that Emanuel was one of the chief fundraisers for the Democratic Party. He is an experienced operator, who not only knows how to raise millions of dollars, but on whom to bestow them. He earned his reputation as hard-nosed and effective magician at raising money the hard way in his hometown of Chicago. Clearly, someone with Emanuel's skills can remind recalcitrant members of his own party (such as Blue Dog...(Read Full Article)