Congress Seeks Normalcy, Heads Back to Work after Shooting

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House Majority Whip Steve Scalise, R-La. remains in critical condition after he and three others were shot Wednesday in Alexandria, Virginia, as the GOP team prepared for the annual Congressional Baseball Game.

Scalise, a congressman from Louisiana who is the No. 3 House Republican, suffered injuries to internal organs, broken bones and severe bleeding after being shot in the left hip on a baseball field where he and other lawmakers were practicing for a charity baseball game.

The congressional staffer, who works for Rep. Roger Williams of Texas, was shot in the leg and has since been released from the hospital.

A rifle-wielding attacker opened fire on Republican lawmakers as they practiced Wednesday.

President Trump made an unscheduled visit to see Rep. Steve Scalise in the hospital Wednesday, after the House Majority Whip was critically wounded by a gunman during Wednesday morning baseball practice.

Scalise, who underwent a third surgery Thursday, is listed in critical condition after being shot through the hip.

"It's been much more hard than people even thought at the time", Trump told reporters at the White House on Thursday, adding he also visited the wounded Capitol Police officer at the hospital. Jeff Flake said Mika was the most seriously injured.

The special agent in charge of the FBI's investigation said there was no immediate indication of the shooter's motive, and that it was too early to tell if Republicans were targeted.

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A GOP congressman who was at the scene of Wednesday's shooting during baseball practice at an Alexandria park is calling for an end to "political rhetorical terrorism", saying the hateful comments he's received on social media in response to this request prove his point.

The gunman, identified by law officials as James Hodgkinson, died after the shootout.

Such tight security is not afforded to lawmakers once they leave Washington unless they are members of congressional leadership. Hodgkinson was killed by Scalise's security forces, however, two of them were shot themselves in the incident.

"He always talked about becoming a police officer, and I remember when he first shared that he was working in Washington, D.C., and that he was a police officer he was so proud", Brooks said.

Four others were also injured in the shooting, including two Capitol Police officers - Griner and David Bailey - staffer Zachary Barth and lobbyist Matt Mika.

Underscoring the day's mood, Reverend Patrick Conroy, the House chaplain, opened the day by seeking divine forgiveness "when we seem to forget that words matter and can become seeds that will bring bitter harvest". "We got a lot of hearts in this country, great hearts, and they're all sending their love and support to the Scalise family", said the USA president.

Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders said he condemned the shooting "in the strongest possible terms" after he learned the shooter had volunteered on his Democratic presidential campaign. The Congressman is among five people wounded in the incident. Rep. Mo Brooks, an Alabama Republican, said his colleague "crawled into the outfield, leaving a trail of blood". The NRA urged voters to support President Donald Trump. Gabby Giffords of Arizona was hit in the head and grievously injured while meeting with constituents at a supermarket parking lot in 2011.

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