Donald Trump mocked Paul Pelosi in a speech just months after the ex-Speaker's husband was injured in a hammer attack at their San Franciso home.
“I will stand up to crazy Nancy Pelosi who ruined San Francisco... How's her husband doing by the way? Anybody know?” Mr Trump said at the fall convention of the California Republican Party in Anaheim on Friday.
“And she's against building a wall [on] our border even though she has a wall around her house, which obviously didn't do a very good job,” he added to laughter in the room.
Mr Pelosi suffered a skull fracture in October last year when an assailant broke into the home and later attacked him with a hammer after asking for Ms Pelosi, then the speaker of the House.
While Mr Trump at one point called the attack a “sad situation,” he also boosted far-right conspiracy theories regarding the incident.
Mr Trump slammed the Democratic leaders in the state to the California crowd.
“Together we will reverse the decline of America and we will end the desecration of your once great state California,” he said. “This is not a great state anymore. This is a dumping ground. You’re a dumping ground.”
Mr Trump is highly unlikely to win California in a general election, but the state is also home to the largest group of Republican delegates in the fight for the GOP nomination. The state will hold its primary on 5 March. Mr Trump noted that he’ll likely be in court on that date following his attempts to overturn the results of the 2020 election.
The former president didn’t mention Senator Dianne Feinstein, who passed away on Thursday, aged 90.
Mr Trump slammed Rep Maxine Waters, claiming that if he said things that she has said in the past, it would place him in “an electric chair times 15.”
He said he “got along” with the state’s Governor Gavin Newsom during his time as president, but added that he now “has become crooked Joe Biden’s top surrogate”.
Mr Trump claimed, baselessly, that Mr Newsom was backing Mr Biden in the understanding that the president wouldn’t “make it”.
In November of last year, Ms Pelosi revealed that her husband was so gravely injured that surgeons had to “take off the skull, reshape it, and put it back”.
“It had cracked,” a shaken Ms Pelosi told CNN, adding that Paul Pelosi’s head was struck “on the top, in two places”.
The suspect, David DePape, was apparently after the speaker when he broke into the home in the middle of the night, repeatedly shouting “where’s Nancy?”
“What they have to do is they have to take off the skull, reshape it, and put it back so it isn’t scratched or [could] pierce the brain,” Ms Pelosi told CNN, recalling her husband’s surgery.
She remembered it as “a pretty serious operation” and that her husband’s injuries were “drastic” and “pretty awful”.
“But the good news was … they told us it had not pierced his brain, which could be deadly,” she added.
The speaker said one of the more difficult things to handle is that the attacker was after her, not her husband, but he was still the one who was injured.
“For me, this is really the hard part – because Paul was not the target, and he’s the one who’s paying the price,” she said.
“It’s really sad because it is a flame that was fueled by misinformation … that has no place in our democracy,” she added.
He “was cool. Paul’s cool,” she said, adding that he “called 911 with enough information, but not too much information” to enrage the “threatening” attacker.
“He saved his life — Paul saved his own life with that call,” she said.
Mr DePape entered the residence at some point after 2am on 28 October, according to the criminal complaint.
He repeatedly shouted “where is Nancy?” when he confronted Mr Pelosi, who was alone in bed at the time of the break-in.
“When Pelosi told him that Nancy was not there, DePape stated that he would sit and wait,” the complaint said. “Pelosi stated that his wife would not be home for several days and then DePape reiterated that he would wait.”
“DePape stated he wanted to tie Pelosi up so that DePape could go to sleep as he was tired from having had to carry a backpack to the Pelosi residence,” at which point he began “taking out twist ties from his pocket so that he could restrain Pelosi. Pelosi moved towards another part of the house, but DePape stopped him and together they went back into the bedroom”.
It was at this point that Mr Pelosi entered the bathroom and called 911.
“DePape remembered thinking that there was no way the police were going to forget about the phone call,” the complaint states. “DePape explained that he did not leave after Pelosi’s call to 911 because, much like the American founding fathers with the British, he was fighting against tyranny without the option of surrender.”
According to the complaint, Mr DePape said they went downstairs.
“The police arrived and knocked on the door, and Pelosi ran over and opened it. Pelosi grabbed onto DePape’s hammer, which was in Depape’s hand,” the legal filing states. “At this point in the interview, DePape repeated that DePape did not plan to surrender and that he would go ‘through’ Pelosi.”
Officers were dispatched to the family’s home at 2.27am, police said.
When they arrived on the scene, Mr DePape and Mr Pelosi were both seen struggling for control of a hammer.
The suspect pulled the hammer from Mr Pelosi and “violently assaulted him with it,” San Francisco Police Chief William Scott said.
Chief Scott added that officers “immediately tackled” Mr DePape and took him into custody.