Congressman Scalise Remains In Critical Condition After Alexandria Shooting

Posted June 17, 2017

Scalise and others were shot during a GOP practice for a century-old tradition in Washington, a charity baseball game between Republicans and Democrats.

Officials said Hodgkinson was carrying notes on which he had written the names of some Republican lawmakers. "Our thoughts and prayers are with those wounded today and their families".

Our friends in Louisiana alerted us to a nationwide blood drive being held for Rep. Steve Scalise who was shot Wednesday while practicing for the Congressional baseball game. One lawmaker said the baseball team members would have been sitting ducks had the gunman been able to make it onto the field.

Police said that James T. Hodgkinson, 66, of Belleville, Illinois, opened fire at the baseball practice Wednesday morning. Democrats have won seven of the last eight games, bringing the overall series to an even 39-39-1 (the teams played multiple times in some years). Gabby Giffords was targeted by a gunman in 2011.

After visiting Scalise Wednesday evening at MedStar Washington Hospital Center, Trump tweeted: "Rep. Steve Scalise, one of the truly great people, is in very tough shape - but he is a real fighter".

"We are, as ever, awed by the tremendous bravery of the Capitol Police", House Speaker Paul Ryan said.

"Pray for Steve!" Trump added. "America is praying for you and America is praying for all of the victims of this awful shooting". The bullet entered Scalise's left hip and tore through his pelvis, breaking bones, injuring organs and causing severe bleeding.

"There is so much you do that I disagree with", House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling, R-Texas, a staunch conservative, told his panel's top Democrat, unwavering liberal Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif.

It seemed most if not all of his fellow congress members were in agreement.

Scalise, who was standing at the second base plate, was struck by gunfire and collapsed.

Sava said he told Scalise's family that "I am not declaring victory until he's playing ball in his back yard with his family".

Hodgkinson legally bought the assault-style rifle and 9 mm Smith and Wesson handgun that authorities recovered after the attack.

Shortly after the shooting, Bernie Sanders, the former candidate for the Democratic presidential nomination, said on the Senate floor that the shooter, James T. Hodgkinson, apparently was a volunteer for his campaign a year ago.

Hodgkinson's Facebook page is largely political. "They are going after President Donald J. Trump tooth and nail".

Scalise will be closely watched in an intensive care unit, he said.

Federal, state and local law enforcement officials said they were tracing the activities - both online and around Alexandria, where he lived in a van since March - of Hodgkinson. He didn't provide specifics on the threats, but said his office has referred the matters to the House Sergeant at Arms, which works with the Capitol Police to identify any security needs.

Scalise, 51, a Louisiana Republican who is the No. 3 House Republican, remained in critical condition at a hospital a few miles from the stadium after undergoing a third surgery on Thursday.

Capitol Police officer David Bailey, who was injured in the attack, threw out the first pitch Thursday night.

Sava also updated on the condition of U.S. Capitol Police Special Agent Crystal Griner, who sustained an ankle gunshot wound. But the winning team's captain gave the trophy to Scalise staffers to present to the congressman.

CNN's Tal Kopan and Eric Bradner wrote and reported from Washington, Nicole Chavez wrote from Atlanta.