Jun 14, 2017

Axios PM

Steve Scalise in critical condition after shooting

As the shooting of House Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.) at a practice for the Congressional Baseball Game began to sink in, conversation about a possible pause in our toxic politics blossomed on the airwaves and social media.

Get up to speed fast: Scalise remains in critical condition after surgery, four others were shot — 2 police officers, a congressional aide and a former congressional aide — and suspected gunman James Hodgkinson is dead.

After a private briefing, Congress came together on the House floor in a moment of unity:

  • Speaker Paul Ryan: "We are united. We are united in our shock. We are united in our anguish. An attack on one of us is an attack on all of us."
  • House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi: "You're going to hear me say something you've never heard me say before: I identify myself with the remarks of the Speaker."
  • Watch Ryan's emotional remarks ... Watch Trump's speech...

The chilling fact that the shooting may have been politically motivated adds to the complexity of the national conversation ahead. Lawmakers began talking publicly about the increasing volume of threats they receive.

And ABC's Pierre Thomas raised the issue of "travelers" — disturbed people "who are focused on this area, who come to this area from time to time, focused on the president, focused on Congress."

  • "We've had a number of incidents in recent years that appear to back up that trend," Thomas said. "So this is becoming an issue, and I think there is going to have to be a lot more attention paid to it."
  • ABC's George Stephanopoulos interjected: "But how much more security can you have around the White House and around the Capitol?..."
  • Thomas replied: "T]hey're going to have to spend a lot more time thinking about … how you [protect] members of Congress when they're out in public areas."

Go deeper: Full Axios coverage on today's shooting, in one post.

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  5. Senate votes for new Russia sanctions: The vote was 97-2 for new actions punishing Russia for election interference. Details.
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