Paul Pelosi was arrested before midnight on Saturday in Napa County and was sent to jail on two counts – driving under the influence and driving with a blood alcohol content level of 0.08 or higher. The incident was first reported by TMZ, citing publicly available arrest records.
Both are misdemeanours. Mr Pelosi’s bail for the two charges was set at $5,000.
Spokesman Drew Hammill said: “The Speaker will not be commenting on this private matter which occurred while she was on the East Coast.”
Mr Pelosi and his wife have been married for nearly 60 years. The speaker remained across the country on Sunday, where she delivered a commencement address at Brown University. She did not mention her husband’s arrest, according to The Hill.
The speaker’s husband was previously under scrutiny due to lucrative stock trades he has made while his wife remains one of the most powerful people in Washington. A growing tide of government ethics hawks, including some members of Congress, are calling for the practice of allowing members of Congress or their spouses to trade stocks to be ended.
Ms Pelosi herself does not drink, according to family members and her chief spokesman. That factoid about the speaker came to light in March of this year when freshman Congressman Madison Cawthorn, who this month lost his own primary battle, accused her of being drunk at an event.
Jail records in Napa County indicated that Mr Pelosi was booked into jail just after 4am, and released around 7am.
The arrest of a spouse for DUI in an election year is the furthest thing from an ideal development for any politician, let alone a prominent one, but Ms Pelosi is not considered to be in electoral danger given that she faces no real competitive primary opponents and resides in a deep blue district.
California’s primary elections are set to occur one week from Tuesday.