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Matt Shuham

Matt Shuham is a news writer for TPM. He was previously associate editor of The National Memo and managing editor of the Harvard Political Review. He is available by email at mshuham@talkingpointsmemo.com and on Twitter @mattshuham.

Articles by Matt

Rep. Chris Collins (R-NY) said Wednesday that he hoped the shooting at a Republican congressional baseball team practice would send a signal to Democrats to “tone down the rhetoric.”

He later said that “all of us, including myself” should tone done their rhetoric. Collins also said he would carry his gun with him as a result of the shooting.

“The rhetoric has been outrageous, of the finger-pointing, just the tone, and the angst, and the anger directed at Donald Trump and his supporters,” Collins said in an interview with WBEN shortly after news of the shooting broke Wednesday morning. “Really, then, some people react to things like that. They get angry as well, and then you fuel the fires.”

“Maybe this is a wake-up call,” he added. “I’m not saying it will be, but let’s hope we can disagree on a more polite, conversational basis, and not do things like what they did at my office a couple of weeks ago, they had a die-in. It’s gone too far.”

Collins said earlier in the interview that “you can never get into the motivation of a crazy person shooting,” but that he suspected Scalise had been a target for the gunman. “Apparently the shooter was waiting for them,” he said separately.

“I’m not going to live my life any differently, that’s not going to happen,” he told WBEN.

In a separate interview with WKBW Wednesday morning, though, Collins noted one significant change.

“I will be carrying when I’m out and about, which, I have to tell you, I have not been, even though I have a carry permit at home,” he said, referring to his permit to carry a firearm.

“On a rare occasion, you know, I’d have my gun in the glove box or something, but it’s going to be in my pocket from this day forward,” he added.

Beginning minutes after the shooting began, and throughout the day, Collins shared his concern for those injured in the shooting and thanked Capitol Police.

In a statement posted to his account at 1:17 p.m., Collins appeared to temper his earlier sentiments, saying that “[i]t’s time for all of us, including myself, to tone down our rhetoric and recognize that we are all of one country and all proud Americans.”

H/t The Buffalo News

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Several outlets on Wednesday published video of the scene of a shooting that occurred during a Republican congressional baseball team practice in Alexandria, Virginia.

The gunman, who President Trump said died of his injuries, shot five people, including House Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-LA). At 2:29 p.m. ET, the Washington, D.C. hospital where Scalise was taken for his injuries, said he “was critically injured and remains in critical condition.”

Watch video of the incident below, credited to witness Noah Nathan, via the New York Post. (Warning: The video is graphic and may be disturbing to some.)

This post has been updated.

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House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) on Wednesday expressed his condolences to those injured during a shooting at a Republican congressional baseball team practice earlier in the day, and said “an attack on one of us in an attack on all of us.”

“I know we want to give our thanks to the first responders and to the Alexandria Police Department who were on the scene in minutes,” Ryan said, speaking from the floor of the House. “And I know this House wants to state unequivocally that we are, as ever, awed by the tremendous bravery of the Capitol Police.

“It is clear to me, based on various eyewitness accounts, that without these two heroes, agent [David] Bailey and agent [Krystal] Griner, many lives would have been lost,” he said to applause.

Ryan also pointed to a widely-shared picture of the Democratic congressional baseball team praying for their colleagues.

“You know, every day we come here to test and to challenge each other,” he said. “We feel so deeply about the things that we fight for and the things that we believe in, at times our emotions can clearly get the best of us. We’re all imperfect. But we do not shed our humanity when we enter this chamber.”

Watch Ryan’s remarks below:

This post has been updated.

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President Donald Trump said Wednesday that the suspected gunman who opened fire at a Republican congressional baseball team practice Wednesday morning had died of the injuries he sustained during the shooting.

“Authorities are continuing to investigate the crime, and the assailant has now died from his injuries,” Trump said.

“Many lives would have been lost if not for the heroic actions of the two Capitol Police officers who took down the gunman despite sustaining gunshot wounds during a very, very brutal assault,” Trump said, after noting the injuries of Rep. Steve Scalise (R-LA), the two Capitol Police officers, and “at least two others.”

“Congressman Scalise is a friend, and a very good friend,” Trump said. “He’s a patriot and he’s a fighter. He will recover from this assault. And, Steve, I want you to know that you have the prayers not only of the entire city behind you, but of an entire nation and, frankly, the entire world.”

“America is praying for you,” Trump continued. “And America is praying for all of the victims of this terrible shooting.”

Trump said he had spoken to Scalise’s wife to offer his support, and to the chief of the Capitol Police, Matthew Verderosa, “to express our sympathies for his wounded officers and to express my admiration for their courage.”

“Our brave Capitol police perform a challenging job with incredible skill, and their sacrifice makes democracy possible,” Trump said. 

He also commended the actions of the Alexandria’s first responders.

“Everyone on that field is a public servant,” Trump said, adding: “We may have our differences, but we do well in times like these to remember that everyone who serves in our nation’s capitol is here because, above all, they love our country.”

“Please take a moment today to cherish those you love, and always remember those who serve and keep us safe,” Trump said before concluding.

Watch Trump’s remarks below. He begins at 24:20 in the White House’s video:

This post has been updated.

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The suspected gunman in a shooting at a Republican congressional baseball practice Wednesday has been identified as James T. Hodgkinson, according to multiple reports citing unnamed law enforcement and government officials.

The Washington Post reported that Hodgkinson, 66, of Belleville, Illinois, owns a home inspection business. His inspection license expired in November 2016 and was not renewed, the Post reported.

NBC News, ABC News, and the Associated Press also identified Hodgkinson as the suspected shooter.

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Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) expressed his concern for those injured during a shooting at a Republican congressional baseball team practice Wednesday morning, and his gratitude for the Capitol Police and other law enforcement who responded to the scene. He also said he knew the Senate would embrace the bipartisan spirit of the congressional baseball game.

“I know the entire Senate will join in echoing the sentiments of the President this morning,” McConnell said from the Senate floor. “We are deeply saddened. We’re all concerned for those injured. We’ll keep them in our prayers, and we’ll continue to send them every wish for a quick and full recovery.”

“We’re grateful for all those who stepped in to help, those practicing on the field, first responders, and of course the Capitol Police officers on the scene,” he continued. “We’re deeply indebted to their service. We again salute their continuing and unfailing bravery on behalf of the Capitol community. The congressional baseball game is a bipartisan charity event. I know the Senate will embrace that spirit today as we come together in expressing both our concern and our gratitude.”

McConnell earlier posted a tweet responding to the shooting:

Watch McConnell’s remarks from the floor below:

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The office of Sen. Jeff Flake (R-AZ), who was present at the Republican congressional baseball practice Wednesday morning when a gunman opened fire on the practice, released a statement detailing the incident.

Read the statement below, via Bloomberg’s Sahil Kapur.

Earlier on Wednesday, Flake spoke on-camera to members of the media. His interview, from Alexandria, was broadcast on MSNBC:

“We were doing batting practice and all of the sudden we heard shots and it was clear pretty quickly that there was a shooter there with a high-powered rifle,” Flake said. “And we — many of us dove in the dugout. Steve Scalise, one of the members, the majority whip in the House, was hit in the hip and dragged himself off of the infield into the field and he was down the whole time.”

“Most of us — about 12 of us got into the dugout and then there was return fire from behind our dugout from the Capitol Police, who were here as part of Steve Scalise, the whip’s, detail,” Flake continued. “It went on for about 10 minutes. A lot — dozens and dozens and dozens — of shots fired. Just going overhead. I got a look at the shooter — he came over behind the backstop — but he had a clear sight into the dugout so we couldn’t stay up for long. And when we heard an-all clear, that the shooter was down, then I ran out to Steve to put pressure on the wound there.”

Flake added, responding to reporters’ questions, that Scalise had been hit “in the left hip” and that, after the shooter was no longer an active threat, Scalise “was coherent and he was asking for water. He was obviously — he laid out there on his own for ten minutes. And we cut away the Jersey and put pressure on him. He was bleeding quite a bit.”

Watch below:

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President Donald Trump cancelled a scheduled speech at the Labor Department Wednesday following a shooting at a Republican congressional baseball team practice Wednesday morning, according to several reports. Five people were reportedly shot.

A White House press guidance email sent Tuesday night said the President was scheduled to speak at the Labor Department at 3:30 p.m. ET, followed by a signing ceremony for an executive order. His schedule was empty besides the Labor Department trip.

Various outlets, citing unnamed White House sources, reported the news:

Earlier on Wednesday, Trump tweeted his condolences and released a White House statement:

“The Vice President and I are aware of the shooting incident in Virginia and are monitoring developments closely,” he said, according to a pool report. “We are deeply saddened by this tragedy. Our thoughts and prayers are with the members of Congress, their staffs, Capitol Police, first responders, and all others affected.”

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NBC News’ Pete Williams reported that the two Capitol Police officers said to be shot Wednesday morning are expected to survive.

The police officers were reportedly shot during a Republican congressional baseball team practice. Rep. Steve Scalise (R-LA) and a staffer for Rep. Roger Williams (R-TX) were also hit.

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House Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-LA) is currently undergoing surgery after being shot Wednesday morning at a Republican congressional baseball team practice outside of Washington, D.C., according to the congressman’s office.

Scalise’s office said he was in “good spirits” and talked to his wife before entering surgery. Scalise is in stable condition, according to his office’s statement.

“We ask that you keep the Whip and others harmed in this incident in your thoughts and prayers,” Scalise’s office said.

Read the statement below:

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