White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel was peppered with questions about his mayoral ambitions after leaving a panel discussion at the University of Illinois in Chicago Tuesday.

Amid the excitement, Emanuel tried to downplay his recent remarks about succeeding Chicago Mayor Richard Daley (D). "It's great to be back in Chicago, and I don't want to be disruptive to what the mayor's doing here," he said.

"As you know, we have our home here," Emanuel added. "And can't wait, at some point in the future -- don't over-interpret everything, don't everybody get excited -- at some point when we come back, which is always our goal, which is why we rented the house."

According to Chicago Public Radio, one reporter asked, "So the name Mayor Emanuel sounds good to you?"

Emanuel replied: "I think you guys are way too excited. You guys got to start drinking decaf."

On a more serious subject, Emanuel said that former Gov. Rod Blagojevich's legal team had not subpoenaed him to testify in the Democrat's upcoming corruption trial.

Last week, Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (Ill.) confirmed he has been subpoenaed by Blagojevich's lawyers.