updated 10/30/2008 7:41:34 PM ET 2008-10-30T23:41:34

Barack Obama's campaign has approached Illinois Rep. Rahm Emanuel about possibly serving as White House chief of staff, officials said Thursday, looking ahead as the marathon presidential race entered its final, frenzied stretch with a Democratic tilt.

The Democrats who described the contact with Emanuel spoke on condition of anonymity, saying they were not authorized to be quoted by name.

Emanuel worked in President Bill Clinton's White House and is now a member of the House Democratic leadership. An aide, Sarah Feinberg, said in an e-mail that he "has not been contacted to take a job in an administration that does not yet exist."

Both Obama and his Republican rival, John McCain, have authorized aides in recent weeks to begin work on a transition to power, but only one of them will be in a position to make use of the results.

Copyright 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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