But his newest namesake — Mayor E-Mane-Uel — celebrates the softer side of the Democratic politician — and his love of ballet.
Born from "domestically endangered mares imported directly from Piber, Austria," the day-old foal will meet the media Wednesday as the Tempel Lipizzans launch their 35th season of "live, awe-inspiring 90-minute program of synchronized movements, athleticism and harmony between horse and rider set to classical music."
The horses are known for their prancing movements, and their history is rooted in “ballet on horseback.”
The Lipizzans' farm in Old Mill Creek — in the far northern suburbs — is the only place near Chicago to see equestrian dressage, a sport in the Summer Olympics.
Emanuel — who studied ballet so seriously as a young man that he considered joining Joffrey Ballet after high school — reminisced about his days on stage last month during a visit to Dyett High School for the Arts in Washington Park.
As an adviser to former President Bill Clinton during the 1990s, Emanuel would unwind from a stressful week in the White House with a weekend dance class. As mayor of Chicago, he frequently attends the Joffrey Ballet, where he serves as the honorary chairman of the board.
It appears the day-old foal will have, uh, big hooves to fill.
"The one thing I will tell you about dance is it takes discipline," Emanuel told the Dyett students. "If you don't learn anything else: You cannot be casual about it if you want to be good at it."
Perhaps the foal will soon perform a dance recently demonstrated by Emanuel himself while taking questions from reporters about the Obama Presidential Center in Jackson Park and whether Cornell Drive should be closed to add parkland.
Earlier this month, Emanuel had already turned away from reporters when asked about whether he supported closing the road used by commuters to get from Lake Shore Drive to Stony Island and onto the Chicago Skyway.
Then the 57-year-old mayor pivoted, showing the result of years of training.
“That would be called a Pas De Deux,” he said, referring to a duet in which a male and female dancer perform together.
“Watch this answer and you’ll see a dance,” he said praising, the former president's plans for the center with out definitively landing on one side of the question or the other.
While the mayor's office declined to comment Tuesday on Emanuel newest namesake, let's hope the foal proves as adept at the side-step as Rahm himself.
And perhaps less likely to drop expletive-filled bombs at politically inopportune times.