US House back in session as lawmakers offer prayers for wounded

U.S. Rep. Chuck Fleischmann has played on the Republican team for the Congressional Baseball Game for seven years.

The House Majority Whip was struck in the left hip when a gunman opened fire during a baseball practice of Republican members of Congress at an Alexandria, Virginia, park Wednesday morning. "I have a feeling that Steve has made a great sacrifice". Over social media he had lashed out at President Donald Trump and the GOP.

Hodgkinson, the alleged shooter, was reported to have had several previous run-ins with the law, because he had no felony convictions he was able to purchase the weapons legally that police recovered from him after the shooting. The bullet tore through his pelvis, fracturing bones, injuring internal organs and causing severe bleeding, the hospital said.

"The Congressman will require additional operations, and will be in the hospital for some time." the Medstar Washington Hospital Center said in a statement, adding that Scalise has "improved in the last 24 hours".

The attack happened around 7 a.m. Wednesday morning at the Eugene Simpson Stadium Park where lawmakers were practicing for a congressional charity baseball game.

For the game, which began in 1909, members of the Senate and House of Representatives donned uniforms representing teams from their constituencies for the game and many topped them with hats from Louisiana State University, Mr Scalise's alma mater, as a tribute.

The two Congressional Baseball Team managers, Republican Rep. Joe Barton of Texas and Democratic Rep. Mike Doyle of Pennsylvania, told reporters on Wednesday that lawmakers would still host the game as planned.

Scalise had been fielding balls at second base when he was shot and then dragged himself away from the infield in a trail of blood.

"To Matt's family, anything you need we are here for you".

Authorities said Wednesday there was not yet a clear motive for the shooting, as the FBI investigated Hodgkinson's associations and social media postings.

Hodgkinson, who had been living in his van in Alexandria for the past few months, had posted anti-Trump rhetoric on his Facebook page and had written letters to his hometown newspaper blaming Republicans for what he considered an agenda favoring the wealthy.

"The security detail saved a lot of lives", he said. The man calmly asked which party's lawmakers were practicing and Duncan told him they were the Republicans.

  • Leroy Wright