WATCH: Trump Attacks John Dingell, A Deceased Lawmaker, Suggesting He’s In Hell
President Donald Trump attacked Rep. Debbie Dingell (D-MI) for a second time this week, suggesting during his campaign rally on Wednesday night that Dingell’s husband — the late Congressman John Dingell — was “looking up” from hell.
The congresswoman had voted for Trump's impeachment earlier in the day.
"Debbie Dingell, that's a real beauty," Trump said of the congresswoman, according to CNN. “So she calls me up eight months ago. Her husband was [in Congress] a long time.”
The president went on to brag that rather than give the deceased congressman the “B”, “C”, or “D” treatment after his death, he gave him the “A+” treatment. Debbie Dingell placed an emotional phone call thanking him for his her husband’s funeral, Trump said.
“‘John would be so thrilled,’” Trump said the widow told him. “‘He’s looking down, he’d be so thrilled, sir.’”
“Maybe he’s looking up, I don’t know,” Trump added, causing audible groans from the audience. "Maybe, but let's assume he's looking down."
John Dingell was the longest ever serving congressman, CNN noted, and was an iconic figure in Michigan, where he was admired across party lines. Debbie currently holds his former seat in the House, where he served from 1955 to 2015.
The congressman was also one of the final two World War II veterans to have served in Congress.
Debbie, who successfully ran for her husband’s seat when he decided in 2014 not to seek re-election, said Trump’s words were hurtful, particularly as she moves into the first holiday season without her husband.
"Mr. President, let's set politics aside," she tweeted. "My husband earned all his accolades after a lifetime of service. I'm preparing for the first holiday season without the man I love. You brought me down in a way you can never imagine and your hurtful words just made my healing much harder."
Trump previously attacked Dingell on Twitter, writing on Saturday: "The last time I spoke to Debbie Dingell was her call thanking me for granting top memorial and funeral service honors for her then just departed husband, long time Congressman John Dingell. Now I watch her ripping me as part of the Democrats Impeachment Hoax. Really pathetic!"
On Thursday morning, White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham defended Trump’s attacks, saying the president is known to be a “counterpuncher.”
"He was at a political rally," Grisham explained on ABC's "Good Morning America". "He has been under attack and under impeachment attack for the last few months then just under attack politically for the last 2 1/2 years. I think as we all know the President is a counterpuncher."