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Then-White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel walks behind President Obama as they prepare to leave Washington for Chicago in August 2010. Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

This week is all about power. Power in the Senate. Power in the White House.

Why it matters: If there's a currency in this town, it's power, so we asked several former Washington power brokers to give us their best tips for new members of Congress — as well as a certain incoming president.

Tuesday night: Rahm Emanuel, as told to Axios.

  • "The successful presidents understand the power of public opinion to change Washington, rather than Washington’s ability to change public opinion."
  • "Whenever you are working it, you’ve got to know where people are starting from, and don’t dismiss their politics as wrong. Try and incorporate their politics in your strategy."
  • "There are different power centers, and the media is its own institutional power, whether they like it or not."
  • "You need to know if you’re moving the ball down the field or stopping the ball. The first is harder, by degrees."
  • "You have all of your administration, not just what’s at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, but to wield that power is to have people know that you control it."

Go deeper

Young people want checks on Big Tech's power

Data: Generation Lab; Chart: Sara Wise/Axios

The next generation of college-educated Americans thinks social media companies have too much power and influence on politics and need more government regulation, according to a new survey by Generation Lab for Axios.

Why it matters: The findings follow an election dominated by rampant disinformation about voting fraud on social media; companies' fraught efforts to stifle purveyors of disinformation including former President Trump; and a deadly Jan. 6 insurrection over the election organized largely online.

By the numbers: Where the earmarks are wanted

Expand chart
Data: House Committee on Appropriations; Chart: Danielle Alberti/Axios

The Dallas-Fort Worth area is being targeted for the largest collective earmark request in the country, according to a detailed breakdown of overall requests released by the House Appropriations Committee.

Why it matters: House appropriators are trying to balance bipartisan momentum for infrastructure investment with "pork-barrel" spending's checkered political history. The data dump is an effort to provide transparency for what are now termed "community project funding" requests.

Democrats open to user fees for infrastructure deal

President Biden sits Thursday with Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.) as they discuss his $2.3 trillion infrastructure proposal. Photo: T.J. Kirkpatrick/The New York Times/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Some Senate Democrats are open to paying for a compromise infrastructure package by imposing user fees, including increasing the gas tax and raising money from electric car drivers through a vehicle-miles-traveled charge.

Why it matters: By inching toward the Republican position on pay-fors, some Democrats are bucking President Biden's push to offset his proposed $2.3 trillion plan by focusing only on raising taxes on corporations and the wealthy.