/Donald Trump takes shot at U.S. Rep. Debbie Dingell, her husband John Dingell at rally

Donald Trump takes shot at U.S. Rep. Debbie Dingell, her husband John Dingell at rally

BATTLE CREEK, Mich. – During his Merry Christmas rally at Kellogg Arena on Wednesday, President Donald Trump singled out U.S. Rep. Debbie Dingell, D-Michigan, after she voted for impeachment.

“You have Dingell from Michigan, have you ever heard of her?” Trump said to his charged-up crowd of supporters. “Debbie Dingell, that’s a real beauty.”

Trump was upset because he said that he gave her the “A-plus treatment, not the B treatment or the C treatment” after her husband, longtime U.S. Rep. John Dingell, D-Michigan, died in February. He called for flags to be lowered and said he offered up the Capitol Rotunda for his memorial.

Trump seemed to say the word “Rotunda,” as if he had something to do with John Dingell’s lying in state at the U.S. Capitol. But Dingell didn’t lie in state before a funeral in Washington and his burial at Arlington National Cemetery and, even if he had, control of the Rotunda belongs to the Congress, not to the president.

“She called me up and said it was the nicest thing and John would have been so pleased,” Trump said, adding that Dingell said John would be happily looking down from heaven at the ceremony.

“Maybe he’s looking up,” Trump said, intimating that Dingell ended up in hell, instead. “I don’t know. Let’s assume he’s looking down.”

The crowd cheered the insult.

Debbie Dingell responded to the comment via Twitter Wednesday night: “Mr. President, let’s set politics aside. 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.”

John Dingell was one of the longest-serving members of Congress, serving from 1955 until his retirement in 2015.

After Trump’s comment, someone resurrected a 2017 tweet from John Dingell: “I signed up to fight Nazis 73 years ago and I’ll do it again if I have to. Hatred, bigotry, & fascism should have no place in this country.”

Contact Kathleen Gray: 313-223-4430, kgray99@freepress.com or onTwitter @michpoligal. Free Press Washington bureau reporter Todd Spangler contributed to this story.