Ari Emanuel: Did he mention lobbying the President or the Vice President?

See update at the end. ———-

The following are three different quotes from Ari Emanuel‘s talk at the Abu Dhabi media summit, discussing copyright piracy. Two suggest he directly lobbied President Obama. The third suggested he lobbied Joe Biden, the Vice President. Ari’s brother Rahm is Obama’s chief of staff. Ari Emanuel is a co-CEO of William Morris Endeavor, a very large and influential talent agency. In Guardian, March 10:

“We are in the midst of talking to the president and some attorney generals and [we are] trying to implement a three strikes and you’re out rule,” he added.

In Deadline Hollywood, March 15,

Emanuel said he’s been speaking to President Obama about the U.S. adopting France’s 3-strikes-and-you’re-out stance.

In Politico, March 15:

In France, they are implementing a three-strike rule. We’re in the midst in the United States of moving forward with the Vice President and some attorney generals of trying to implement the three-strike rule…

According to Josh Gerstein of Politico, Ari Emanuel claims he was misquoted, and was in fact referring to the “vice President.” KEI’s first take: Ari Emanuel’s quote was widely discussed on twitter and blogs, and Ari was embarrassed at his indiscretion, which suggests Rahm Emanuel’s brother is lobbying the president directly.


I doubted the Guardian misquoted Ari in Abu Dhabi. Josh sent me a link to the talk, and I was wrong, and Josh’s quote is right. Ari Emanuel clearly mentioned the Vice President. As is evident from the youtube clip here