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Who is Rahm Emanuel's wife? Former Chicago mayor's 'racist' remarks against Asian-American activist resurface

Emanuel is the front-runner to be Biden's nominee as ambassador to Japan. Ever since the video started doing the rounds, social media users are calling on the President to rethink his decision
Rahm Emanuel waves to supporters with his wife Amy Rule during his victory speech after being re-elected Mayor of Chicago on April 7, 2015, in Chicago, Illinois (Getty Images)
Rahm Emanuel waves to supporters with his wife Amy Rule during his victory speech after being re-elected Mayor of Chicago on April 7, 2015, in Chicago, Illinois (Getty Images)

When news broke out that President Joe Biden was going to give former Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel a high-profile ambassadorship, Twitter broke out in a rage, especially after a dated video of him seemingly "infantilizing" an Asian-American climate activist went viral on social media. 

Sources familiar with the matter reportedly said that Emanuel is the front-runner to be Biden's nominee as ambassador to Japan. But ever since the video started doing the rounds once again, many people on social media are calling on the President to rethink his decision. 


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Emanuel, who previously served as White House Chief of Staff under former President Barack Obama, at the time was speaking at a 2019 event held by the Chicago Council on Global Affairs and made harmful stereotypical comments about the activist.

After he was introduced to the crowd by the activist, Emanuel told her things that were at first inaudible. The two then posed for pictures. Upon taking the podium, Emanuel said that he asked her if she is "quiet" and does a lot of "studying" so that he can adopt her. 

Former White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel, his wife Amy Rule, and their children Leah and Zach wave to the crowd after Emanuel officially announced his candidacy for Mayor of Chicago November 13, 2010 in Chicago, Illinois(Getty Images)

You can watch the video here: "Rahm Emanuel to an Asian-American climate activist in 2019: Are you 'up for adoption? ...You’re quiet, right? You do a lot of studying?' Harmful stereotypes from someone who is now being considered for Ambassador to Japan or China."


In the same thread, the account added that Emanuel may have hit the "teenage activist on the butt with his stack of papers."


According to reports, the diplomatic role in Asia would mark a high-profile return to the federal government for Emanuel, who built a reputation as a brash but effective political tactician in the Democratic Party.

Twitter is quite angry, to say the least. "That’s really insulting and demeaning. Here she is trying to be a professional and he infantilizes her. And the remarks about adopting her and saying she’s quiet and studious? UGH. Apologize @RahmEmanuel!" one tweeted. "@JoeBiden @KamalaHarris Do NOT appoint this man to anything," a user tweeted to the administration. "THIS would be a major Fuck Up for the Biden Administration. How could they ever 'consider' this?" another added.




According to reports, he is also being considered for the post in China, but sources said Japan is the more likely landing spot for former President Obama's chief of staff. Former State Department official Nicholas Burns is the likely front-runner to end up in Beijing. The former Chicago mayor was widely criticised for his handling of the 2014 shooting of teenager Laquan McDonald.

Who is Rahm Emanuel's wife?

Emanuel is married to Amy Merritt Rule and the couple share a son and two daughters. According to a 2012 Chicago Tribune article, the former Chicago first lady prefers to maintain a low profile, so much so that many locals might not know her by sight. The article also mentioned that she is highly educated with an art history degree from Tufts University and a master's in medieval art history from the University of Chicago. She is a stay-at-home mother. 

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel sits with his wife Amy Rule and former President Bill Clinton as he is introduced at the inauguration ceremony for his second term as Chicago Mayor at the Chicago Theatre on May 18, 2015, in Chicago, Illinois (Getty Images)

She is, in Emanuel's words, the rock of the family. "Whatever role she'll play is one she's going to be comfortable doing," Emanuel had reportedly said. "And I think you'll see that not with a flip of the switch, but over time. Her big thing right now is volunteering in neighborhood groups and with kids. And that's what she's going to do. She's not doing it for you or for the media."

Rule is reportedly very involved in her community. On Chicago River Day, she joined volunteers to pick up garbage, sort recyclables and plant greenery.