The husband of the president of the House of Representatives of the United States and Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi was “violently attacked” on Friday at their residence in San Francisco, and had to be hospitalized, the congresswoman’s office said.
“Early this morning, an assailant broke into the Pelosi residence in San Francisco and violently assaulted Mr. Pelosi,” the Democratic leader’s spokesman, Drew Hammill, said in a statement.
Paul Pelosi, 82, was taken to the hospital and is expected to make a full recovery, Pelosi’s office said.
The Democratic speaker of the House, who is second in line for the presidency of the United States, was in Washington with her protective gear at the time of the assault, according to Capitol Police, who indicated that she was still is investigating the mobile.
The Associated Press news agency said the assault was not random and that the assailant specifically targeted the house. The House Speaker’s office said Paul Pelosi was “violently assaulted.”
The circumstances of the attack were unclear, including how the intruder entered the home. The assault comes less than two weeks before the midterm elections on November 8, in which control of the House of Representatives and the Senate are at stake.
The White House said President Joe Biden had called Pelosi to express his support for the “horrible attack” and was praying for her husband.
“The president condemns all violence and asks that the family’s desire for privacy be respected,” White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said in a statement.
The attack caps a tumultuous year for Paul Pelosi, an 82-year-old businessman who was convicted of drunk driving after an accident in May and sentenced to five days in jail.
Less than two weeks before the midterm elections, several US lawmakers have sounded the alarm about renewed violence against them.
According to the Capitol Police, responsible for protecting members of Congress, threats against lawmakers have increased considerably since 2017, going from 3,939 to 9,625 in 2021.
New York police warned Thursday that extremists could target politicians, political rallies and polling places ahead of the midterm elections.
Paul Pelosi, owner of a San Francisco-based real estate and venture capital firm, was convicted of a misdemeanor charge of driving under the influence of alcohol after being involved in a traffic accident in May. He was sentenced to five days in jail in Napa County, California.
On Friday morning, police closed off the streets around the Pelosi’s residence, a three-story red-brick house in the upscale Pacific Heights neighborhood.
With information from AFP and Reuters