U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said she and her family were “heartbroken” after a “violent man” broke into her San Francisco home and attacked her husband.
82-year-old Paul Pelosi is recovering from a skull fracture He was hit with a hammer by an intruder on Friday.
The Democrat broke her silence on the attack in a statement on Sunday, saying her husband’s condition “continues to improve.”
She said: “Sadly, yesterday morning a violent man broke into our home, asked to confront me and brutally attacked my husband Paul.
“Our children, our grandchildren and I are heartbroken and traumatized by the threat to our pop music. We are grateful for the quick response from law enforcement and emergency services and the life-saving medical care he is receiving.”
The intruder – David DePapp – broke into the couple’s San Francisco home around 2:30 a.m. and was reportedly looking for a spokesman for the American Family.
Police said officers were called to the house for a “health check” and found both men with hammers.
The suspect then pulled the hammer away from Mr Pelosi and used it to “violently attack” him before being tackled by police, they said.
At some point, the suspect searched the Democratic leader, shouting, “Where’s Nancy? Where’s Nancy?”
San Francisco Police Chief William Scott said at a news conference Friday night that the attack on Mr. Pelosi’s San Francisco home was “intentional.”
“It was not random. It was intentional. It was wrong,” he said.
Mr Scott declined to comment further on a possible motive for the attack and said an investigation was ongoing.
The U.S. president earlier responded to the police chief’s comments, saying the attack appeared to have been directed at the speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives.
He was quick to condemn the attack on Mr. Pelosi, calling it “despicable,” and compared the attack on the House speaker’s husband to the U.S. Capitol riots.
Speaking at an event in Philadelphia on Friday night, he said there were reports of attackers repeating “the same chants” heard during the Jan. 6, 2021, riots.
“The slogan was: ‘Where’s Nancy?'” Mr Biden said, calling it “despicable.”
“There is too much violence, political violence,” the president added, showing that rejecting the election and calling COVID-19 a “hoax” has eroded the political climate.
“Everyone with a conscience needs to speak out clearly and unequivocally against violence in our politics, whatever your politics is,” he said.
DePape, 42, was charged with attempted murder, assault with a deadly weapon, elder abuse, burglary and several other felonies.
His motives are not yet clear.
A spokesman said Mr Pelosi was rushed to hospital and underwent surgery for a fractured skull and serious injuries to his right arm and hand.
He is expected to make a full recovery.