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tv   The Lead With Jake Tapper  CNN  June 14, 2017 1:00pm-2:01pm PDT

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game and they enjoy the camaraderie. and our thoughts are with them, too, obviously, and to our colleague steve scalise. hopefully he'll be able to watch the game on television if c-span is televising it, and we're thinking of him, too. you know, it shouldn't take an incident like this to bring us together. i know in times of tragedy we have -- americans do that, but joe and i have been reflecting a lot lately just on how we can still maintain our -- our principles and our legislative age daze and can do it in a more civil way, and when the leadership of this country is civil towards one another, maybe the public will start being civil towards one another, too, and the news media will be civil towards members of congress and the public, and we change the immediate in this country so that people don't get filled up with -- with this kind of hatred, but tonight we want to
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be together. i just suggested to joe that we would like to host the entire republican team down at the democratic club, probably some of them have never stepped foot in that building. >> i've been in it one time. >> but i -- we want to have them to dinner. we're going to have both teams together and just have a time to be with each other and reflect upon this day and -- and the -- and to share some food and drink and get to know each other a little bit better, so, joe, i'm hoping that you guys, most of their schedules will allow them to intend and we look forward to the baseball game tomorrow and continuing that great tradition. >> i'm going to bring my food taster, but we will be there. we'll take a few questions. yes, ma'am. >> have you discussed any additional security measures for the game tomorrow in light of what's happened? >> i checked both with the speaker's office and i checked with the -- the chief of the capitol hill police, and they
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have both assured us that -- plus my staff has checked with the nationals security personnel department. it's going to be a very secure facility. it's designed to be secure and we've all been assured that it will be a very safe facility tomorrow evening. >> just to follow up quickly as well. the fbi has told us that there was a second congressman who was transported to a hospital with an injury this morning. >> congressman roger williams is my coach, and he in trying to protect some of the players and my son -- my son and i scrambled into the dugout, he sprained his ankle, and he has had medical attention. we don't think it's broken. he was not shot though. he injured himself in trying to protect some other people. >> as far as the security, if
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representative scalise's detail was not there, going forward, as far as large groups of members doing events like this, is there -- is this being rethought as to how much security really should be put in place? >> there was i believe another security detail there from the capitol hill police simply because there were a lot of congressmen there, and they did assist in attacking the shooter, but as mike has pointed out. there would have only been one officer, maybe two, had not congressman scalise been the majority whip so that is something that we're rethinking. >> they are generally not on the field. at our practice we have no security detail on the field. there was a capitol police car in the parking lot with one officer about 500 yards away.
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by the time he even figured out what the commotion was all about and called for backup. >> and our officers were not on the field but they were outside the vehicle. they were out by the bleachers outside the field and the shooter was outside -- he never -- the shooter never got into the field. he was over on the third base side and luckily for us all of our people always stay on the first base side and the gates on the third base side were locked so he had to try to go around behind home place, and the capital hill police and mr. scalise's police and fairly quickly the alexandria police all kind of converged on him and prevented him from getting on to the field. >> i've seen you up here. can you talk about in light of this morning's events the spirit of bipartisanship hon hill, and you also touched on this a bit.
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the game is normally very competitive. can you kind of talk about how the spirit of competition might change in light of this morning. >> i don't think the spirit of competition will change. i mean, competition is a good thing. we're mostly competitive people or we wouldn't have made it down here anyway, so we don't mind that part about it. the sportsmanship has always been good at our games. joe will tell you after those games are over, we get together for the awarding of the trophies and joe has been extremely gracious the seven years in a row. >> i knew that would come up. >> and i was extremely gracious when he both me last year. no, that's never been a problem, joe, in all the years i've been associated with the game for 23 years, so -- so i don't think that part will change. >> we're intense on the field. i haven't made game a long time, but when i did i was the pitcher for our team and i did brush back some of my democrat friends, and they brushed me
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back. >> but he couldn't throw hard enough to hurt us so it wasn't that bad. >> i certainly couldn't get it to home plate today without bouncing it, but as mike pointed out hopefully this will -- you know, you can be intensely political without being personal, and a lot of the traditions of the house are designed to defies personal animosity. the gentleman from pennsylvania, my good friend when texas. you can't make personally drog did i comments to another on the floor so the rules are designed to diffuse and mike and ier is is on the energy and commerce committee and so we have a bond beyond just managers of the baseball teams, but it is something this we probably need to meet at the leadership level and at the regular member level
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and try to address because what happened this morning was unconscionable except that it was there. you could see the shooter ducking out and shooting primarily by the time i saw him at the policeman, and he was doing it simply because he errant pal he apparently didn't like the political climate and started to shoot at a bunch of congressmen who happened to be republicans. that's not america. yes, ma'am. >> been here with a lot of members and staffers who feel that the climate has changed here on capitol hill, and this is what you're talking about, leadership discussions and members don't know each other as well. it's been that way for a while. some are raising the ideas, i can't even believe that this is asking us, maybe it shouldn't be
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a republicans versus democrats game. that's an odd question but i'm hearing it out there. >> well, i think we ought to continue. both mike and i, you know, requested or requested, suggested that the game continue tomorrow. we left it obviously to the speaker and mrs. pelosi and the capitol hill police to make the final decision, but he and i both thought that the game should go on, and, again, you -- you can be a liberal democrat or conservative republican or somewhere in between and discuss your issues on the floor and not go out in the lobby and get in a fist fight. this gentleman apparently drove 800 miles. now whether he came with intent, who knows. we'll never know since he passed away, but we need to take a step back, and i think at our level
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we should be a part -- that's why we're holding a joint press conference. >> [ inaudible question ]. >> i think the internet and twitter and all the instantaneous aspect of the news cycle has made it more personal and members flying back to their district every weekend. very few members live up here. you know, it is a different climate today than it was in 1985 when i first got elected. part of it is technology and part of it is the way politics have evolved. the attack politics and the 15-second attack ads and things like that. members are not looked at as people anymore. we're kind looked at as -- as -- i won't say targets, but -- but people think they can come to our town hall meetings and say just the most obnoxious things
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and we not feel it personally. i can assure you every member of congress is a person. he has family and while we try not to show it, sometimes we do take it personally. >> yeah. there's just very few opportunities to interact outside having our suits on. i've watched joe's son jack grow up and i always have a yearly banter about him about trying to get a secret out of jack, saying, hey, yeah, tell me something that your dad is doing that i don't know about and jack would always say, i'm not telling you anything, you know. i'm not giving you any information, and -- and when you know somebody's kid, somebody's spouse, play baseball with them, you see them at the gym and you talk to them there, it's different. when you see that person on the committee level, i mean, i wouldn't think of being harsh to joe barton no matter what we may disagree politically because i feel like he's a family friend,
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but there's so much pressure on members to get home right after the last vote. you see us all running into national or, to you know, to dulles to get on planes because we're not allowed to stay here because then we've gone washington. we've got to be back home in our districts, and the things that used to bring members together, whether it's travel, that's frowned upon. if you -- if you belong to the gym, well, they think that's a perk you shouldn't have. all the chances to interact with each other outside our suits and outside floor debate is few and far tweerng and i think it's -- and joe's right. when he and i first got here, there wasn't social media. >> there wasn't the internet. >> but now people get information out after fire hydrant. much of it without a filter, and the level of discourse has become -- it's -- people don't look at each other eye to eye. they use the two thumbs and
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insult one another, and there's -- i just think it's lessened the civility, not just in our politics but in day-to-day interactions with people that you see outside, too, so it's -- it's just a different era we're operating in that is had a little bit tougher than the one we operated in prior to all these changes. >> when my son jack was born, i was chairman of the energy and commerce committee, and jack got as many presents from the democrats as he did from the republicans, and he still has some of those. he's grown up. he lives in texas with his mother. we're divorced, but he's grown up in the congress, and he comes up every year, and when he comes
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on the floor, he'll touch base with some of the republicans from texas and then he'll make a bee-line to the democrat side to talk to cedric richmond, to mike doyle and when john dingell was still in congress. >> yeah. >> to john dingell, so he -- he is an example of bipartisanship in himself, and he was at practice this morning, and not only -- he had 25 dads. everybody out there was looking out for him, not just me. >> the first thing i thought about when that happened was jack and that he was going to be okay. cedric had his 3-year-old son at our practice, you know. closer to gametime families come to watch the game and they are here and a lot of them come out to the practices, and -- and i -- i don't think any of us ever give thought to our safety
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when we were practicing on the baseball field. it just didn't occur to us that anything bad could happen. >> especially at 6:30 or 7:00 in the morning. >> yeah. when you figure most of the bad guys are sleeping. >> anybody else? >> yeah. >> can i just ask you to follow up on what you were saying about your personal safety. what do you say to your son or to your wife who is going to look at you now and say i don't think you're safe at work? do you feel safe? >> i feel safe, but, you know, i'm an adult, and i make a conscious decision to run for congress. nobody puts a gun to our head and says we have to run. >> that's right. >> it's different with your family. your family shouldn't be exposed to that, but it really doesn't matter these days whether you're up here in texas in my case or pennsylvania. we've had people protest at my house in texas when my family was there, and -- and we've broached this with the speaker. it's something, you know,
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everybody has a right under the first amendment of the constitution to address congress for redress of grievances, and that's why we do a lot of town halls so our constituency can come and talk to us directly face to face. your family should not be exposed to that and who would have thought that taking my son or in the case of cedric richmond, his son to a baseball practice in the early morning would expose him to danger. that's -- that's not acceptable, so that is something that i will think about in the future. >> i bet you most members of congress will tell you that they don't want any personal detail -- i certainly don't. i've never felt unsafe here or in pittsburgh, but i do think when you have a situation when
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you've got 20 or 30 or 40 members of congress all in the same place in an area that is completely open to anybody just walking through, you know, perhaps we should maybe rethink that a little bit, but i think from a personal standpoint most members would tell you that they -- that they feel fine and they are not looking for any security. >> this young lady right there. >> do you think there's been an increase in political violence? >> political violence? >> well, there's been an increase in terrorism, if that's considered political violence i would say the answer is yes. you know, this country has always had a huge amount of tension politically. i mean, the civil war, we shot at each other for two and a half, three years. normally you yell and scream and that's as far as it goes. again, the technology today makes it so much more personal,
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and i think some of the tv attack ads make it easier for the general population to want to resort to personal attacks. that's just my opinion. yes, sir. >> do you think did you you clearly are both moved by this morning's events. do you think this will translate into any actual change, you know, six months from now? >> i would say yes because this is -- this is a -- the institution of the congress and the extension of that, this baseball game. you know, we play it to have fun, but we -- we raise a lot of money for charity. we'll raise over half a million dollars for charity tomorrow night, and -- and i think a lot of members who came to the briefing this morning feel like it's time to take a step back, and i can tell you motorcycle doyle inviting the republicans
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to dinner at the democratic campaign committee has got to be a historic first step in bipartisanship, and i'm going to order the most expensive steak on menu, if you have steak on menu. >> we're democrats. we don't have steak, joe. that's just at your club. >> i don't know that i would go as far as to say yes. i've been around this place a long time and i've seen a lot of tragedy happen, and i've seen us all say it's going to change, and it hasn't, so let me say -- the answer that i would say is i hope so because it needs to happen. but i guess time will tell. >> it's hard to believe it's only been a couple of hours since it happened. can you describe a little more of the emotional and psychological stages that you've gone through. how your son is doing. a few of you have changed your clothes. >> i did get home. >> and also an up date on the other victims. >> i told him i wouldn't stand
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next to him until he changed his clothes. >> one thing that hasn't changed is 3959 is a parking lot and that's why we started at 3:30. you hear this bang and you're not sure that it's a shot, but then you heard three or four bang, bang, bangs right in a row, and you knew that we were being shot at, and -- and my son was down in the -- in the -- along the first base side with my oldest son in a batting cage, and i was by the first base dugout in the on-deck circle and i looked down there and yelled at brad my oldest son, you know, get jack and get down, and they both did and then somebody told me to get down, and i did and then we -- i got jack -- he
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crawled under a car outside of the fence and he was under a car with the bleachers between him and the shooter so he was in a very safe place because it would have been really hard for that shooter to even know that he was there, and so then you just wonder when it's going to stop, but you keep hearing these like firecrackers going off, and it may have only been four or five minutes, but it seemed like to me at least ten minutes before they finally got the shooter down, so while that's going on you're just -- i could see jack. i could see him under the car and i just kept saying stay down, jack, stay under the car, stay under the car, and i finally saw one of the security officers rush the shooter with his pistols drawn and said drop the pistol or drop the pistol or pistol down, and when he didn't
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do that, this -- i think this is the officer that -- that shot the attacker, and we got everybody together and several members of our -- of congress when scalise was shot they rushed to steve and add ministered first aid and then protected him. congressman winstrop and congressman brooks, congressmla there were several out there on the field at the time administering first aid to congressman scalise. my focus was on both of my sons and then to get the shooter and then to check who was hurt. i did call 911. i also called the capitol hill police on my cell phone, and as
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soon as it was apparently safe to get up, i checked on everybody who was down and then made a phone call to try to get the speaker on the phone and let him know what was going on. >> can you tell us about the condition of those who were shot. >> mr. scalise is in stable condition. there was a volunteer, former congressional staffer who is probably the most seriously wounded. he's out of surgery and is -- i would say i'm not a doctor so i don't know what condition to rate him, but he does not appear to be in imminent danger. another staff person for roger williams was shot in the leg. i think he's out of the hospital. roger williams, you know, broke his ankle or severely twisted
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his ankle. he's in a boot on crutches, but he's okay. there are at least two of the officers who were shot, and i'm told that they are okay, and then the shooter was shot and passed away. >> sir, congressman scalise is stable? >> you'll have to check with his office. i'm told he's out of surgery. >> you haven't been able to talk to him? >> i have not tried to bother him, no, sir. >> will there be anything special, a special ceremony to mark -- >> we're working on that both at our level and the speaker pelosi level and the short answer is we think so, but we don't have confirmation on that. >> congressmen, you are saying that you obviously want to find a better political climate to really be around, but how -- how can a better political climate
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happen when the likely arguments that are going to happen now are going to be on gun control or no gun control? >> well, i can't answer that. i mean, thank god we had security people there that,morning that had guns. i don't believe the shooter thought that through. the fact that we had people that could shoot back saved a lot of lives, but, beyond, that i'm not going to comment. that's -- that's -- you know, honorable people can have different opinions about that issue. >> this will be the last question. >> on an emotional level and not a political level, there are mass shootings around the country. it's not uncommon. does this change how like your visceral reaction to when these happen? >> are you asking me or mr. doyle? >> mine has always been the same. when those children were shot at sandy hook, i mean, any time,
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any mass shooting like that happen, you think about your own family, your spouse, your siblings, because that's -- that's what happen. people lose their loved ones, and -- and these are horrific acts, and -- and i think all of us are -- are just repulsed when they happen, an -- and -- and we -- we have disagreements on what the answer to that is, and there's no easy answer to it. there was an easy answer it would be done already, but -- but today feels just like these other incidents. to me i think god no one died. well, the shooter died. we're just glad that everyone else was okay. >> my reaction is why would somebody hate somebody so much that they would shoot somebody that they didn't even know other than an act of war where you're defending your country or in
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your home defensing your family. i -- i just don't see how people shoot people or kill people, attack people. here's somebody that i've never met and to my knowledge never met anybody on that field and yet he drove a fair distance, and whether he intended to do what he did or did it on the spur of the moment, when he started shooting, he was shooting to kill people, and thank god he wasn't a very good shot and thank god we had security officers on scene that shot back and -- and deflected him from shooting the members. had he been able to get inside the -- the fence on the first base side into the dugout there were 15 to 20 members and staff that were just laying on ground, and they were not targets so long as he was outside the
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fence, but had he gotten in the fence it could have been a bloodbath. thank y'all. the game is tomorrow at 7:05. >> thank you. >> welcome to "the lead." i'm jake tapper. you were just listening to the managers of both congressional baseball teammates. that's congressman mike doyle of the pittsburgh area in pennsylvania and congressman joe barton of the dallas-fort worth area of texas saying that the game will go on tomorrow evening despite obviously the tragedy that occurred at the practice ballfield earlier today. let's show you some video from just moments ago where we see fbi forensic teams on the scene in alexandria, virginia, where a congressman and four others were shot this morning. had it not been for the presence and heroism of capitol hill police officers, i might now be reporting to you about had a massacre. that's at least according to senator rand paul, one of several witnesses to the shooting of the five individuals, including his colleague, republican congressman steve scalise of indiana. scalise, we're told, is in
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critical condition right now after surgery according to the hospital. republican members of congress were practicing for tomorrow's charity baseball game when police say a man with vocal hostility towards republicans and witnesses are describing an absolutely chaotic scene from anywhere from 50 to 100 shots fired. this cell phone video of shots echoing across the field was taken just moments ago. >> hey. is that guy okay out there? the guy -- the guy who has been shot? is he okay? anybody talking to him? [ gunshots ] >> scalise is the third ranking member of the house of representatives. he was shot in the hip. four others were wounded. congressional staffer zack barth and matt mika, a lobbyist for
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tysons food and house speaker paul ryan identified two members of the capital police, crystal griner and david bailey. two of the capitol hill police officers were only there because majority whip scalise has a detail. had he and therefore those two officers not have been there we could very well be talking about a much worse tragedy. federal law enforcement sources identified the shooter earlier today as 66-year-old james hodgkinson from bellville, illinois, which is outside st. louis, missouri, though his wife did tell abc news that her husband had been living in alexandria, virginia, the last two months. the shooter's social media footprint and letters to the editor that he wrote to his hometown paper made clear his strong support for senator bernie sanders and his loathing of the republican party. he cursed president trump, labeled the president a traitor and called for his destruction in several facebook posts. the shooter died from his injuries after the shootout with capitol police, news that we were first told by president
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trump himself who had a somber and reflective message for the nation. >> we may have our differences, but we do well in times like these to remember that everyone who serves in our nation's capital is here because above all they love our country. we can all agree that we are blessed to be americans, that our children deserve to grow up in a nation of safety and peace and that we are strongest when we are unified and when we work together for the common good. >> let's bring in ohio congress congressman winstrop. first of all, how are you doing? >> i did feel a little bit like i was back in iraq but without
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the same assets around mere. >> you say that you served in iraq as an army surgeon and what happened today reminds you of being in iraq. take us back to the moment when you first heard the gunshots. how long did it take you to figure out what was going on? >> pretty quickly because i was down in the batting cages, and i heard that, and i thought that that sounded like rifle fire, and -- and then trent kelly, who was at third base and closest to the shooter who fortunately missed trent shooter. he's also a guardsman, national guardman and a colonel in the army, and he yelled shooter and that alerted people pretty quickly. it was confusing because you couldn't imagine that this could actually be happening but it was, unfortunately. >> and you tended to the wounds of congressman steve scalise. during the attack it sounds like you went straight into physician mode. how was he holding up in that moment of shock he must have been going through? >> he was doing well. he was talking and would answer all my questions. i was concerned about fluid loss
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internally. i found his entry wound but didn't find an exit wound and that concerned me greatly so even though we were able to stop the bleeding externally i was concerned what was going on inside so we were getting him water, gatorade, whatever we could to get fluids in and wanted to get an iv as soon as possible which we didn't have, unfortunately. >> he was shot in the hip, the left hip, right hip? >> the left hip, yes, sir. >> and you didn't find an exit wound which is very concerning. we learned moments ago that congressman scalise is in critical condition. as a medical doctor, could you describe to us what that might mean. >> well, it may mean that it hit some internal organs or large vessels. since it didn't exit, i was making somewhat the assumption that it hit his hipbone, but it may have ricochetted and moved from there. you're always concerned about hitting a large vessel, especially in that area, and i couldn't really tell the angle of the entry wound so i don't know if it traversed upwards or
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into some of his internal organs and that's my concern, and we're praying for steve, but he was able to answer everything when i was with him. he was extremely strong. you know, you mentioned one other thing before. who knows what the situation would have been if it weren't for those capitol police there who did a tremendous job and when it first started, you didn't know if it was one shooter or two shooters, and they took their position, and they operated methodically and did an extremely good job as well as getting hurt and finishing their job. >> senator rand paul said if the two officers hadn't been there might have been a massacre. i assume you agree. >> you had people fenced in. everyone was in a fence. the man in my opinion knew what he was doing, had been there before, had seen the setup because he started at a position of advantage beyond the third base dugout, and no one is over there. everyone is on first base side, and i was along the first base line. i could see him and then he went behind the dugout and came closer to home plate on the other end of the dugout and shot
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from there. then he went behind a building that's behind home plate and came around the back of that, all the while coming closer to all the people that were there and taking the escape route and hiding behind trees and taking cover and he went back behind the building and after exhausting a lot of ammunition with his rifle and at that point he had a handgun and that's when they were able to take him down and that's when i was able to run out to mr. scalise. >> and the four other individuals were injured. one of the capitol hill police officers i believe was shot, another one was injured in the melee and someone, a lobbyist, a government affairs director of tyson foods i think who practices with you, was also injured and then a staffer, a congressional aide. do you know how any of them are doing? >> i think what i've heard is they are all doing better. the one that really had the most severe looking injury from what i understand is the young man
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and he apparently had missed his heart, thank god, and i didn't know who else was hurt because if you picture the scenario. the field emt eed and yet there's steve scalise laying out there on the infield by himself and god only knows what was going through his mind as he's hearing this gun play go on for ten minutes and he can't go anywhere. >> and where were you at this point? the other colleague mike bishop said you were all sitting ducks. >> we really were in so many ways if not for the fact that the capitol hill police were there because he was moving in towards us, towards our only escape route, and so -- and so steve -- steve scalise was a sitting duck. everyone was basically a sitting duck in many ways. there were only so many places you could go, especially when leaving the field so he never got as far as he would have liked, i'm quite sure but he was methodically moving everyone into one area where he hoped to i believe open fire on them, but, again, thanks to the
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capitol hill police he was thwarted. sadly, others were injured, and we're going to pray for them, and i know that they are fighting hard to get well. >> were capitol hill police returning fire the whole time? how long did it take before they sprung into action? >> well, once they assess the situation which i would say was in like 30 seconds. trying to figure out where is the shooting coming from and where should we position ourselves. it's not like there's 100 of them, right. there's only a couple and so they did a tremendous job in reacting quickly, and, you know, when you're out on the field, you don't have your phone with you. i don't know who could make 911 calls but most of the players out there, they don't have phones to make the call, so i would say that they acted pretty quickly and -- and, again, they don't know if it's one shooter or two when they got started so they had to position themselves carefully. >> was the shooter saying anything while he was committing this atrocity? >> not that i'm aware. i wasn't close enough probably to hear him. there was so much gunfire you couldn't hear anything but that, really. like i said, one he was taken
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down, that's when you saw some people spring into action, and around that time there -- there were police and emergency personnel arriving on the scene. >> congressman. we're so glad that you're okay. >> thank you. >> and thank you so much. congressman scalise is lucky that a physician was there. thanks for sharing your story today. >> thank you, sir. take care. >> appreciate it. joining us is mark kelly, a retired u.s. navy captain and also the husband of former congressman gabby giffords, the last member of congress to be shot in 2011 in tucson, arizona. it's so good to see you, commander. i have to say, a situation like this must cause post-traumatic stress response and congresswoman giffords just because it's so familiar. >> for me it brings back a lot of the memories from that day in january in 2011 what happened to gabby and, you know, what i thought about after that. gabby being, you know, shot
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first, she doesn't remember a lot from that day, but she's not going to forget this day, you know, to see -- to wake up in the morning here and see what happened to her colleagues and her friends is, you know, something natural makes her very sad and we're thinking about all those folks that were injured, especially the congressman and the capitol police who were so heroic today. >> your wife sent a tweet this morning that says, quote, my heart is the with my former colleagues, their families and staff and the u.s. capitol police, public servants and heros today and every day. have you spoken with your wife about the shooting today? >> oh, absolutely. i mean, we were here in new york city. we got in late. we're on west coast time, so when this happened it was pretty early in the morning, and i woke her up by turning the tv on because i saw what happened on my phone. she wasn't too happy about that and then, you know, she saw the reason why i had turned on the tv, and -- and, you know, for
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her having experienced something like this in her district, to see this happen again with her colleagues on the other side of the aisle is, you know, it's completely unacceptable. it's sad. it's -- it's -- you know, it -- it really -- you know, i say it hit her pretty hard. >> you and she have devoted so much time in your lives really towards trying to end this type of violence from happening in this country. a day like today must be very frustrated in particular for the last u.s. member of congress to be attacked in a similar way an her husband. >> yes, but, you know, we're not thinking about the politics of this issue at this time. we're thinking about her former colleague, the capitol police and two other people that were injured and their families and what this is like for them. we've experienced this ourselves, and i can tell you it's a tough process to go through. hive been tweeting or texting a
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little bit with senator flake who was there today. i talked to him earlier today. you know, he's going through this essentially a second time. he's at the hospital now. he was at the hospital when this happened to gabby, you know, so this is going to be tough on some of her colleagues but i think, you know, now is the time to think about them and their families and that's what gabby and i are doing today. >> what advice do you have for people like jeff flake or other survivors about how to deal with the coming days and weeks? >> well, i think, certainly for, you know, folks that are injured, you know, they are going to have to deal with, you know, their medical and, you know, physical issues. thank god, you know, people were not so seriously injured. i think at least everybody -- i know some of the individuals are in critical condition, but from what i understand they are going to survive, but they are going to have some challenges ahead. they should know that there is
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a -- that there's help out there. you know, for the post-traumatic stress, i'm no expert on that, but i'm sure congress is going to provide some assistance for those individuals that are dealing with that. >> your wife in her tweet mentioned the heroism and the valor of the capitol hill police. witnesses and fellow congressmen are saying that without them being there, this could have been a massacre. are we now at this point in this country where congressmen and congress wim have to have security with them if they go out in public? >> well, i hope we're not, but, you know, when you saw what happened to gabby and then, you know, what happened today, i mean, these things do happen. i personally agree. if capitol police from everything that i know this could be a lot worse. there could be a number of dead congressmen around dead senators if capitol police wasn't there to do something about this. i think the situation, you know, this situation and others that
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we have, i mean, look. it's not on the news much today, but there was a mass shooting in san francisco today as well. these things seem to happen on a more regular basis. i think we all agree that we have a problem in this country, and for problems there are solutions so hopefully both sides of the aisle can get together and figure out at least something that we can do to try to reduce the likelihood of things like this happening. >> i remember going to tucson and following president barack obama as he participated in the event after your wife was shot and talked about the need for the country to -- for people to tone down the rhetoric and talk about reaching across the aisle, how we're all americans. there's a lot of talk like that today as well. you know, if you look at the social media page of the shooter, there's a lot of nasty, nasty attacks on republicans, on president trump. do you think that this call for
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an improved tenor and tone in american politics can actually happen, or do we just talk about it on days like today and then move on the next day? >> well, i think it can happen, you know, if people are really motivated to make it happen. i think it happened after what happened in tucson, you know, for a little bit, but, you know, what people say really does matter. gabby has always been somebody, that you know, has worked to cross the aisle. has been friends with her republican colleagues and took the approach to her job always in an incredibly, you know, respectful manner and never, you know, went down, that road, you know, to be incredibly partisan and nachty and bitter. i think that's an important thing to do. i mean, we can accomplish so much more as a country if we work together as a team and work in a bipartisan manner, and, you know, and what kind of example -- this is an opportunity for people to set an
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example for, you know, their children and grandchildren and how we can, you know, come together and be better after a horrible incident >> commander mark kelly, thank you so much. please tell your wife that we say hello and we're thinking about her, especially today. >> i will do that, and thanks for having me on, jake. appreciate it. >> thank you. congressman roger williams was at baseball practice this morning when the shooter opened fire. his aide zack barlt was shot and is said to be in critical condition. let's take a listen. sglifrp want to thank you all very much. my name is roger williams. i represent the 25th district of texas in the united states congress, and i also help coach the republican congressional baseball team. this morning, as you know, we were attacked by a gunman at our press conference.
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there will be those who talk about what's wrong with america but in this case officers griner and bailey, we saw what's right with america. we saw two people risk their lives to save the lives of others. we saw courage in the face of death, and we saw examples of why all americans should be grateful every day for law enforcement officers around this country. there could have easily been 25 deaths or more today. i think we had 25 team players and about 15 staff, but officers griner and bailey prevented, that and my family and i will be forever grateful. the thin blue line held today, and law enforcement officers everywhere should be proud and
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americans everywhere should be thankful that this is still the kind of country that still produces these kinds of heros. so ask everybody in joining me and praying for victims and their full recovery buff go to bed tonight. i'll be happy to take some questions. i would briefly just tell you my story. i was on the third base side hitting ground balls to trent kelly and ron di santos. little did i know that the perpetrator was probably 20 yards from me. i went around the first base side to hit congressman scalise ground balls. i did that. the first one i hit him the shots went off. i heard the first shot, and i wasn't sure. i thought maybe it was the
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backfiring of the car and then the second and the third and everybody yelled he's got a gun. run for cover, and that's -- that's what i did and fortunately i was on the first base side and just emotions take over. i ran to the first base dugout which has got -- which is in the ground about seven feet, and i literally dove into that dugout, it would be like diving into a swimming pool with no water, but i did, and in there were some of my other colleagues. zack barth who works for me was shot while he was retrieving balls in the outfield. when i got into the dugout, it wasn't ten seconds and zack had come running in from the outfield and he literally, we landed in each other's arms. he held me and i held him.
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jeff flake took his belt off and made a tourniquet around zack's leg to stop the bleeding. you know, i remember and chuck fleischmann was on the phone to 911 screaming to hurry up and get here. jack barton, joe barton's son was in the dugout with us, and we were all taking care of him. just trying to take care of each other. there were a lot of heros today among my friends. it's something i will not forget. it seemed like it went forever. the police say they got there in about three or four minutes, and i'm sure that that's the case but it's a long time. they say 60 shots were fired. but without our capitol police who took -- literally took a step forward when they didn't have to. they could have stepped backwards.
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they stepped forward. they saved all of us out there. there is no question about it. we had no arms. all we had was bats, and the shooter. but i'm praying for whip scalise, the policemen, mika, and then my young man that works for us in our office zack who will be fine. so with that i'll be glad to take some questions, if you have any. yes, ma'am. >> what can you tell us about steve scalise's condition. have you talked to him? >> i have not talked to him but i understand all the reports that i get he's doing well. out of surgery. i'm not a doctor, but all reports are he's going to make a full recovery. >> yes, ma'am. >> are are the crutches from an
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injury today? >> yeah, i forgot about that. i -- i guess when i dove into the dugout, i had done something -- i've been in the hospital in alexandria took really good care of me. i want to thank the nurses and doctors. i'll be going back to texas tomorrow night to let my doctors see what they need to do as far as my ankle and my leg and my feet, but that's the injury i have. it's an ankle/leg injury that they have got me going to where i can move around and be okay tomorrow at the game and then i'll go home tomorrow night to -- to get mixed, but everybody did what they needed to do . a lot of brave people serve in the united states congress. >> can you elaborate on your staffer's condition? senator barton said he was
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released from the hospital. >> he has been released from the hospital. he was shot in the leg. he was in the outfield. i give him credit. i think zack is probably 23, 24. all the time he was bleeding and we were under fire he was texting. he was texting and letting people know we were under fire and that we needed help, so he's doing great. vice president pence has spoken to him. i'm grateful for that, for his talking to -- talking to zack, so he's on the road to recovery. yes, ma'am. >> will the team plan on having practice tomorrow morning? i know the game is set to go on, but what about practice? >> some is us are on the injured reserve list right now, but i think we were supposed to have a breakfast tomorrow. that's been cancelled, i believe, and i believe what we will have is a get there a little early tomorrow night and
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have a -- maybe have a prayer -- a little prayer service or something and then play baseball, and -- and if you're not sure which one i'll be, i'll be the one coaching third on crutches, but, we're going to play. we need to play. this is a game that's been going on for over 100 years. it goes to charity, and we need to play this baseball game, and so i'm excited that we decided to do that. the speaker, i talked to the speaker today about that and i told him i felt we should play. i know he talked to congressman doyle and congressman barton and we all agreed we need to play baseball. >> have you followed through that thought process. why is it important to get out there and play tomorrow? >> that's a great question. i think it's important. because the people that want to destroy our lives and livelihood here in america they win if we give in. america doesn't give out. america doesn't give in, and we must play this baseball game. if we play -- if we don't play this baseball game and we go
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home, then they win. so that's the reason. this is america, the greatest country in the world, and if you punch us, we will punch back. and we're going to play baseball tomorrow. >> congressman, mike bishop described the situation here as he said, quote, we were sitting ducks. guns saved our lives. can you cement on that as far as what you were feeling in this? >> well, it took the second shot for me to understand what was happening hand hearing everybody, and we were sitting ducks. i mean, we had -- we had nothing to fight back with but bats if if got to that. we were sitting ducks. i think he was not able to get on the field because the gate was locked on the other side. if he had gotten on the field, it -- it could have been a bad situation, but he wasn't able to do that, but we were sitting ducks. i mean, you've got 40 people on a baseball stadium field at 7:00
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in the morning. he just decided to shoot, and so -- and so bishop is right when we said that. that was a god way to say it. in the back. >> are you sure whether scalise was hit with that first bullet that was shot? did it seem like anybody was struck with that bullet and you were also pretty emotional off the top talking about officers griner and bailey, and i wonder if you had a chance to catch up with them and thank them for saving lives? >> i haven't personally thanked them. i will be, but i'm thanking them again right other. they saved everybody's life. they literally did that. you know, i represent ft. hood, and they teach the military to take a step forward, not a step back when you're in combat and these guys and gals did it. it is emotional. it's an emotional day it, and --
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and when you think back to your family, you think about your friends, you thinking about being in that position, it's emotional. >> [ inaudible question ]. >> i don't know. i've heard and i have no backup to this but the first shot we actually heard was actually shot hat trent kelly who was at third base. and then trent ran so i don't know which bullet got who. i don't know who one got zack or steve. yes, ma'am. >> congressman, how do you feel about your personal security after what happened today, and what do you think should change around members' personal security? >> well, i frankly haven't thought about it. i know there's a lot of conversation if we should have security or what as individual congress people.
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you know, it's -- it's a -- it's in a job that you're very -- people of are very aware of it and where you are. i think we need to think about it, although i thought speaker gingrich put it well today when he said one of the great things about having elected government is you can talk to your elected officials, and when you're in congress we represent about 800,000 people in our district and some didn't vote fours, and some did and we represent all of them, and it's a slice of america, and -- and people need to be able to talk to us. so i think it's a dialogue we're going to have, but we want to be able to keep -- we have open government. but i -- i will tell you, i'll be frank with you. i mean, here i am a congressman and, you know, every now and then you would like to have a friend on one side of you, but -- but i haven't decided that. i -- i do believe in open government and i thought speaker gingrich really put it well when he talked about it. >> yes, ma'am. >> are you concerned that the current political climate is
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encouraging violence, and if so, what do you think americans should do about it? >> well, i -- i don't know if i want to talk about that today. i don't know this person. he evidently had an issue. wasn't a democratic or republican issue. it was just an issue. nobody condones this had. i do think candidly the rhetoric in this country could can be turned down a little bit, the tone could be turned down a little bit but that's what we have to work on and -- and continue to talk about it. >> yes, ma'am. >> do you think security plans for game tomorrow are going to be altered, or will there be an increased amount of officers? >> well, i mean, i don't know what the plan was to begin with, but i would -- i would think that -- i'm hoping since it's a charity we'll have more people than we would have. we normally have 25,000 people at this game. nats stadium holds 50.
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maybe we'll have 50,000 there tomorrow. that would challenge. security, but i don't know. i'm not worried about that, because we have the best security people as i said earlier. they are going to do the right thing. everybody, not just the congress people, but everybody will be protected, and -- and to the extent they need to be so i don't worry about that. i hope we have a lot more people at the game. >> can you tell us about how mika is doing? >> well, i've only heard again. meek a.g., a lovely man, a friend of all of ours. i think he was shot in the torso area, and so i've heard -- i've heard just through his family that his condition is improving, and everybody is praying for mika. >> back to the security situation, do you think in this
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particular instance anything could have been done differently recognizing the heroism of the two police officers? hand let me ask you this, because i've heard other members say this. would you feel safer if you had the ability to carry gun, including on capitol premises and other places where the general public is allowed? >> well, first of all, i'm -- i'm for the second amendment, big second amendment guy and i'm from texas so, yes, i would have felt a lot more comfortable if we were able to do that, okay. what was the -- >> on the security situation. do you believe -- while recognizing the heroism of the officers do you think more could have been done? >> listen, in retrospect -- in retrospect, and i thought about this this morning, if -- if you have 25 congressmen in a very small group and you wan to harm somebody. that is a pretty good way to do it, and i'm not so sure that in
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the future at least if we had that situation again that -- this is me talking, that we probably ought to take a look at our security on those that are there in big groups like that. i think that might be important. but, look it. we've been playing this game, and i've been in it now for six years, i guess, and we practice every morning 6:00 to 8:00. every morning. we have fun. no problems. and i thought the story that jeff duncan told, which i'm sure you all have heard it already was very interesting. having it fellow come up to him. jeff was leaving early and he said are those republicans and democrats and duncan said republicans and he began shooting, so -- so -- but i do think that should be addressed by law enforcement if we're going to have -- big group of elected officials, how do we want to handle that from a security standpoint. thank you very much and god bless you. thanks.