For the annals of saying something without saying it. But he said it! No, he didn't. It's the old use-mention distinction.
The use–mention distinction is a foundational concept of analytic philosophy, according to which it is necessary to make a distinction between using a word (or phrase) and mentioning it, and many philosophical works have been "vitiated by a failure to distinguish use and mention."Trump even chided the woman... and yet, the chiding was comical. The man who normally denounces political correctness — who says we haven't got time for political correctness — is scolding a lady for saying Ted Cruz is a "pussy."
So, he got the word out, got his distance from it, displayed some comic chops, and reminded us that political correctness isn't something to be completely thrown out. You transgress it strategically, and you call it back strategically. Keep them guessing. He wants to be unpredictable.
ADDED: Clint Eastwood calls a kid a "pussy" to "man him up a little bit":