Congressman shot at baseball practice is avid sports fan

Many have credited the U.S. Capitol Police for effectively engaging with the gunman, using their pistols against his rifle - a decidedly uneven matchup across a wide open space. "They put themselves in harm's way every day and run to the sound of the gun".

It's not unusual for lawmakers to take security precautions, such as coordinating with local law enforcement.

Despite Wednesday's shooting, representative Martha McSally (R-AZ) and Representative Eric Swalwell (D-CA) said Thursday's congressional baseball game will go as planned. He was tended to by fellow lawmakers, including Brad Wenstrup, a congressman who is a physician, before being transported to a hospital, where he was listed in critical condition.

The Capitol Police were directing their fire at the opposite dugout, over by third base, Brooks said. "He was a sitting duck".

"I was fresh off of surgery, but they made more plays than we made previous year", Richmond told reporters. He said there could have been as many as 25 deaths had the armed officers not been present. "Fortunately, he's a good guy", Brooks said of a Capitol Police officer.

"I spoke with Special Agent Bailey and Special Agent Griner earlier this morning".

A man who had posted angry messages against President Donald Trump and other Republicans on social media opened fire on Republican lawmakers practising for a charity baseball game on Wednesday, wounding a senior US House member and three other people.

The shocking event left the Capitol horrified and stunned.

As the shooting unfolded, Senator Mike Lee, a Utah Republican, texted Fox News to say that Mr Scalise had been shot in the hip and would survive.

"And we all laid flat, and the pops got louder - so I think the shooter was coming across the baseball field towards everyone". The Alabama lawmaker said he colleague "crawled into the outfield, leaving a trail of blood".

- Representative Jeff Duncan (R-SC) said Hodgkinson allegedly asked him whether Democrats or Republicans were playing at the baseball practice shortly before the shooting.

"His question was pointed: "'Excuse me sir, who's practicing today? "Take that for what it is". Bernie Sanders (I) of Vermont posted a statement saying that Hodgkinson, a one-time home inspector, had apparently served as a volunteer on his presidential campaign.

"It doesn't matter if you're a Democrat or a Republican. you're connected to your colleagues, current and former, by a shared sense of service to ideals far greater than yourself", Giffords said in a statement.

When the shooting started, Rep. Trent Kelly of MS, playing on the third base side of the field, was facing the gunman and was the first target, lawmakers said. Wednesday's shooting highlights the vulnerability of lawmakers when they are in public.

Fatally wounded in the return fire was the reported shooter, identified by authorities as James T. Hodgkinson, 66, from the St. Louis suburb of Bellville, across the MS in IL.

"That was locked", said Rep. Michael K. Conaway, Texas Republican.

Scalise and his wife, Jennifer, have two children. They demanded a nationwide concealed carry law that would let someone permitted to carry in one state also carry elsewhere in the U.S.

Two capitol police officers were wounded in the shooting, authorities said. "There was two staff members on the other side of this ten foot fence and I'm behind a tree now right next to the batting cage", said Sen. "Those citizens need to have the choice guaranteed to them by the Constitution to have the means to protect themselves".

At a news conference near the scene of the shooting, Virginia's Democratic governor, Terry McAuliffe, urged gun control measures. "Maybe it's a wake-up call for what we can do as politicians for less partisanship, and more bipartisanship".

Hodgkinson is believed by investigators to have been a person "of strong views", a senior USA official said, without elaborating.

  • Larry Hoffman