President Barack Obama’s controversial and high-profile chief of staff, who is Jewish, could be leaving his job within a year to run for office in Chicago.
Rahm Emanuel, who was also a senior aide to Bill Clinton, has been tipped by Washington sources to leave the White House after November's mid-term elections.
Friends of the 50-year-old have said personality differences with President Obama and a desire to spend more time with his family are behind his probable exit.
However, pundits have also predicted that the famously short-tempered Mr Emanuel will mount a campaign to become mayor in his home city of Chicago, where President Obama first honed his political skills.
The current mayor, Richard Daley, is up for re-election in 2011.
Mr Emanuel, who celebrated his son's barmitzvah in Jerusalem earlier this month, is the son of an Irgun fighter and attends an Orthodox synagogue. He is said to have provided the inspiration for television's famous Jewish White House staffer, Josh Lyman in the West Wing.