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tv   Andrea Mitchell Reports  MSNBC  June 14, 2017 9:00am-10:01am PDT

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news show the now dead assailants birthday is december 12th, 1950. he had a previous record of assault. the noon hour has arrived here in the east, and now to carry on our coverage, andrea mitchell at the top of the hour, thank you. >> thank you, brian williams on this day. we're reporting from washington where we're covering a major breaking story. a shooting at a baseball practice. a top member of congress, steve scalise among those shot. the gunman has died. at 7:09, a gunman opened fire on an early morning practice suggestion. preparing to play their democratic counter parts tort night at the annual charity game
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in national park. remember members of congress where there to practice for that game featuring bipartisan members. the gunman open fired with what they are calling a rifle of some kind. he was identified at james t.hodgkinson. the video was taken right after the hooting showing steve scalise on a stretcher, the louisiana congressman being loaded on to a helicopter. he is being treated right now. in a statement, his office said prior to entering surgery, he informs good spirits, he spoke to his wife by phone, he is grateful for the brave actions of the first responders and the capital police. two two capital police officers were also wounded in the
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shooting, their injuries are not considered to be life threatening. they were part of his detail, if they had not been there, it would have been entirely different and more tragic occasion. the office of congressman roger williams was also shot and taken to the hospital. a lobbiest for tyson foods also shot four times and his condition is not known. the team manager for the house republicans was there with his 10-year-old son who described the scene after returning to the capitol. >> the detail immediately began to return fire and alexander
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police came. my other son was in the battle cage and he is also very brave. >> you can see him there in that picture, the tall er of the two. >> we heard shots and it was clear pretty quickly there was a shooter with a high profile rifle. steve scalise was hit in the hip he was hit, and he was down the whole time. >> senator rand paul was in the batting cage when it started. >> i could see way in the distance, the gun sounded like an ar-15, and we could not see
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it, but it was a rival. one of the things it really was is fortunate, and not everybody probably would have died except for the fact that the capitol hill police were there. they were there because steve scalise is on the team. if there was no leadership person there would have been no no one there. garrett, at the scene there, tell us what people are saying, you talked to anyone who was there at the time. >> yeah, it is hard to understand the kind of neighborhood this is people are mowing their grass. you played some of the sound that we heard from members of
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congress that were on that field, but as the police presence here hasle lessenned, heard from people in the neighborhood that heard all of the gunshots this morning. one witness saw essentially a shootout between the suspect and a couple officers. i think it would have been the capital police officers, taking cover behind a black suv exchanging fire back and forth. we know that the good news so far is that the officers are in good condition. we did hear from the george washington university hospital that they received two passions in critical condition this morning. that leaves one in critical condition. things are starting to return to
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normal near this initial. >> that is exactly where we find jeff flake, about to get up at pat. first, senator, thank you for joining us. how are you doing? >> it was a long, tough morning. >> tell me what you saw and heard. >> i was there on the third baseline, we were all on the field batting or fielding, and the shooter got near the third ba baseline. we didn't really seesaw him standing there. but i remember gravel being kicked up by a couple bullets, i guess, if is very seergs, a lot
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of us ran to the dugout to take cover, but he was shot pretty early, he was playing second base at the time. >> where was the shooter from your perspective? >> it seemed he was firing inkii indiscriminantly. he made his way to the same dugout that but took refuge in. he came clear across the field after being shot. steve scalise dragged himself into the outfield about 10 to 15 yards to get further away from the shooter. we knew he was out there, but we could not get out to him while there was gunfire. and the police were firing from the dugout that we were in.
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i kept yelling back are you friendly? we didn't know if it was another gunman or if it was return fire. and the capital policeman put his head around the dugout and i could tell it was them returning fire. it was a very chaotic situation, and it lasted for at least ten minutes and it just kept going on and on. some estimated over 50 shots. i stood up up in the dugout trying to get a sense of where the gunman was. he walked around first base outside of the fence. . and he got into the dugout. and we realized we were not safe there. >> could you see what kind of a
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gun. could you see what kind of weapon it snfs. >> no, i couldn't. and someone saw him raise a rifle to begin with. when i saw him i didn't see the rifle. i think at that point he may have had a handgun. once someone yelled the shooter is down, i ran over to steve scalise to apply pressure to the wound. >> were you the first person to get to him? from your account, the gunfire, cross fire, went on for ten minutes, was he on the ground out towards the outfield for ten minutes pile the gunfire was going? >> yes, about ten yards into the outfield on the grass. and you can see the trail that he left, the trail of blood, from where he was hit.
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and he was laying there and that is what was really tough. we were treating another staff member that was shot in the dugout, and making sure that joe martin's 10-year-old son made it to the dugout, and putting him as deep as we could under the bench so the gunman could not get to him. and we just didn't fwhee to do at that point. we could not rush through the gunfire to get to steve, so as soon as we heard that the gunman was down, that's when i ran out, and some others followed later. >> let me ask you, when you first got to steve scalise, was he talking? >> yes, he was coherent and conscious. we tried to keep him talking. the gunshot was on the left hip so i put psh on that, i had a batting glove still on and tried to keep blood from coming out.
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we used that shirt to put pressure on, and ten minutes later after we knew the shooter was down, someone brought some gauze. we tried to put that on, but there was a lot of blood. >> where was his wound, senator? >> on the left hip. we could see the entry, we never saw the exit. he has had surgery now so we will know more about that but there was a lot of blood and we tried to keep the bleeding down. >> where was the staffer's wounds? >> it was on the leg, right about the calf, and we had someone take off a belt, and we used the belt to wrap around to stop some of the bleeding as well. so there was a lot going on, but a lot of it involved just trying
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to duck down as far as we could to keep out of rain of the gunfire. >> how large was his detail. he had a detail there, thank goodness, but -- >> i think it was two or three. they came out, it was after awhile to steve, and he brought a kit and he had a wound that was on his foot. i think he was shot on the foot, and i think he may have been the one to bring the gunman down, but he never stopped. it was, i could tell you there was a lot of heroism there among the capital police, and thank goodness that steve was there at practice today, we would have fwhn a much, much worse situation. >> did you hear the gunman say anything? >> no, people ask that, there was yelling, but it was too tough to tell given the chaos
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who was yelling what. i was doing some yelling to try to figure out if the gunfire behind us was friendly or not. we feared there could be more than one gunman, and feared that he might make his way around and into the dugout where there was the biggest concentration of members >> let me ask you about joe mart martin's son, the emotional impact on a child, how is he? >> i tell you, he did the right thing. he was in, there is a little batting cage, and i had just walked by and saw him in the smaller one, and i was wondering in the dugout where he was, and
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he rushed into the dugout and i think joe martin was behind the dugout looking for him, extremely concerned, but we want today make sure he was as stach as we could. we stuffed him under the bench where he could not be scene, and that was a tough thing. >> do you practice every day in the days leading up to the game, that was scheduled for tomorrow night and will be played as schedule, to the cheers of house members, do you practice every day? >> typically, i don't want to give away too much, but leading up to the game, we're out there early. we have been going to that field for a long time, someone would know that, they don't have to be a local. there has within reporting from
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that field and practice. it could have been known. >> just to just date you -- update you, the alleged shooter at the republican baseball practice is someone that volunteered on his campaign and he is sickened by this and we will continue to bring you that up. right now the prayer is being delivered on the house floor. paul ryan will be taking the house floor senator, we'll go there momentarily, stay with us, if you can, while we listen. >>. >> we as americans are blessed by a free and open society with rights secured by law and the constitution. but once again, we are reminded that there is a vulnerability
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that comes with that openness. may we all be vigilant in being good citizens, neighbors, and defenders of our way of life at a time when so many challenges to our way of life and government seem under siege we thank the men and women that respond to the crisis that fall before us, es earherba personal especially the capital police. may they be assured of our appreciation of their service. in this great silence, as we are gathered most dramatically as this assembly at the people's house, may republicans and
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democrats be mindful of the rare companionship they share. men and women that have taken very public responsibility for our country, that carries so many burdens and today the remind reminder of shared danger. may this day be characterized by kindness, goodwill, and compassion to one another. god bless america, and may all that is done this day be for your greater honor and glory, amen. >> amen. >> the examination of the journal for the last day's proceedings, pursuant the journal stands approved. the chair will lead the house in
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a pledge of allegiance and invites the members of the gallery to join. >> i pledge allegiance to the flag of the united states of america and to the republic for which it stands, one nation, under god, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all. >> for our purposes, the gentleman is recognized. >> my colleagues, there are very strong emotions throughout this house today. we are all horrified by the
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dreadful attack on our friends and colleagues and those who serve and protect this capitol. we are praying for those attacked and for their commanders. steve scalise. matt mika. special agent crystal griner. we're giving our thoughts for those being treated at this moti moment, and we are united. we are united in our shock, in our anguish, an attack on one of us is an attack on all of us.
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i know that we want to give our thanks to the first responders and the alexandria police department that were on the scene in a minute. we want to state that we are, as ever, awed by the tremendous bravery of the capitol police.
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>> i spoke with special agent bailey and special agent greiner this morning. one was just finished with surgery and the other was going in. it is clear to me, based on various eyewitness accounts that without these two heros, agent bailey and eighth greiner, many lives would have been lost. i know that we all want to learn as much as we can about what happened, we just received a briefing from the sergeant of
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arms. i have complete confidence in the investigation being conducted by the capitol police, the fbi, and local law enforcement. we want to extend our gratitude for the outpours of support that we have received from throughout the capital and from throughout the country. knowing steve scalise as we all do, he is likely really frustrated he won't be able to play in the baseball game. i also know that he wants us to commend the bravery of those that came to the aid of the wounded. in the coming days we will hear their stories and have a chance to hold up their heroism. there are so many memories from this day that we will want to forget, and there are so many images that we will not want to see again. but there is one image in particular that this hot should keep, a photo i saw this morning of our democratic colleagues gathered in prayer this morning
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after hearing the news. every day we come here to test and challenge each other. we feel so deeply about the things that we fight for and the things we believe in that at times our emotions could clearly get the best of us. we do not shed our humanity when we enter this chamber. for all of the noise and furry, we are one family. these are our brothers and sisters in the line of fire. these are the brothers and sisters that saved count less lives. let's slow down and reflect to think about how we're all being tested right now. i ask each of you to join me to resolve and to come together, to
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lift each other up, showing that we're one house, the people's house, united in our humanity, it is that humanity that will win the day and it always will. god bless, i yield. >> seeking recognition. >> mr. speaker, i rise to join the distinguished speaker in paying tribute to the brave men and women of the capitol police force, and also in sadness for the assault that was made on our
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colleagues and members of the staff. to my colleagues, you will hear me say something you have never heard me say before, i identify myself with the remarks of the speaker. they were beautiful remarks, mr. speaker, thank you so much for the sentiments they represent. thank you so much. >> again, we're not one caucus or the other in this house today, but we speak for each other in seeing that we send our thoughts and prayers to our colleague steve scalise. personally we have our italian american connection, so as soon as i heard his name, i was filled with concern as i would be for anyone here, but we had a special connection, so our hopes
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and prayers, and i will be asking you every five minutes how is steve coming along, also zach barth, matt mika, a former staff member. age knowledging their sacrifice and if they were not on the scene, lives may have been lost. every day the capitol police protect all of us, takes risks for us, and while a day like this is a time when we can focus on it so sadly, it doesn't mean that other days are not as channelling. especially i want to call attention to detective john gibson and jacob chestnut that
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1988 lost their lives protecting the congress, the capitol, and not just the members of congress, but the staff, the press, and our visitors. people who come to see this capitol. this great edifice around the world. it is an attraction, and that makes it all of the more risky. you may not need this, my colleagues, but every time i pray, which is very frequently, i pray for all of you. all of you together. i used to pray for your happiness. for the fact that we would, working together heed the words of president kennedy in the closing of his inaugural address when he said god's work must
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truly be our own. how do we view what god's will is for us. how do we come together to give confidence to the american people that as our founders intended we would have our decision agreements. we would debate them and have confidence in our beliefs. in more recent years, our safety, i can say that quite clearly, it has probably been the target of more threats than anyone. and so, i prayed for barack obama, and now i continue to pray for him and i pray for donald trump that his presidency will be successful, and that his family will be safe. because it is about family. we are called for a purpose to
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this body. it is a great thing and we know what it means to each of us to serve and we recognize that in others, and it recognizes that we respect you and your constituents that sent you here. so e pray, my prayer is that we can resolve our differences in a way that furthers us towards e plerbus uman. as i mentioned a minute ago in
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sports are a wonderful thing in our country. one of the most unifying -- we like to say the arts, but sports really bring us together. the differences in opinion on politics, but when their team is on the field, people come together. so when this team was on the field practicing, in such a cay with such comradery and brotherhood, we have sisters on our team, for this person to take this action was so cowardly, so cowardly we all learn more about motivation and the rest of that, but it seems particularly sad and any violent death, of course is sad, but particularly sad that at a time when people want us to come
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together, and we're prepared to come together tomorrow night, that this assault wlould paid, but we cannot let that be a victory for the assailant. wement everyone to do their very best, and we will use this occasion to bring us together and not separate us further. with that, again, i want to thank the speaker for bringing us together and again with e endless gratitude to our capitol police. thank you for the opportunity to share thoughts with you on this sad day. steve and others you're deeply in our prayers. we count the minutes until you return. please convey that to him, mr.
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speaker, thank you. >> in a moment, an emotional moment on capitol hill. nancy pelosi saying an attack on one of us is an attack on all of us. we're at a family, when especially on a baseball field. this is what people want, seeing members from both sides coming together and that tomorrow night's baseball game will continue on as scheduled. my colleague kacie hunt, who herself was out practicing for our reporters versus members charity game, that we all participate in next week on capitol hill, you were out this morning as part of our practice and went right to the hill when this happened. tell us about the emotions of the members. >> that is right, and we cut our practice short.
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everyone started receiving the news in various ways. and i have to tell you i was part of, as members came out, they walked in one long line, and ahead to are people that i cover every day. it is not a situation where they're always comfortable with you. you're a journalist, not necessarily looking out for their best interests, but in this case there is a real sense of shock. i talk to them, i come up to the capital complex to work here every day, and i think there is a sense of gratitude to them, what happened today in eve preventing it from being much worse than it could have been. a moment of bipartisan
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solidarity, and shared feeling and experience. paul ryan says an attack on one of us is an attack on all of us and i think you feel that in the halls right now. >> paul ryan identified the names of the plaufss that we have, and he said we would not report them until he said so. the two police officers that were members of his detail, and senator jeff flaik told us just moments earlier that these are members of the detail that would not have been there if steve scalise was not playing today. as a part of the leadership, he has security detail that the average senator does not. after ten minutes, an exchange of gunfire between the detail and the shooter, that until the
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all clear was sounded, it was ten minutes when he was out on the ground. others then joined in trying to stem the flow of blood. he saw an entry wound in the left hip. i wanted to read to you one of our top investigative producers, from illinois, the home of the suspected shooter, who did die after being medivaced out, police say when they arrived, they found him with a weapon and a valid illinois firearms license. the police report says that hodgkinson was advised not to fire in that area. he was firing among pine trees,
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still shooting. only a few months ago at 3:06 in the afternoon. someone that may have been practicing, doing target practice, but he had a valid illinois license. all of that is pretty shocky information. we also know from the statement bernie sanders, that he apparently for his social media, he was a volunteer in sanders campaign. sanders acknowledges that and says he is disgusted and appalled by this dispickble act of violence and calling for nonviolence. so whatever the mental condition of this man, now that he has died, there is no way to question him, but in his condition, there was, at least
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he thought there was something to address. >> yes, we're getting a complete picture. we mentioned the police incident from earlier this year. firing 50 or 60 rounds behind his house. that is consistent with what witnesses here said they heard. the police said he was legally allowed to own that weapon. there is another half to this cocktail of violence which is another report that folks on the investigative team have flagged that says he was charged in the past with assaulting a girlfriend in his home. you have a note of history of violence and a note of firearms, in the woods behind your house, and draw the notice of the local authorities. you mentioned the political activity, senator sanders says
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it is deplorabldeplorable, it s despicable. you just heard the speaker and leader nancy pelosi talk about the call for bipartisan here, the political and antirepublican leanings are being drawn into the conversation here in a twha is not likely to go away any time soon either. >> yeah, he in still photos in the past has ban protester, and this will like i will be swept up through social media. i think the thing to focus on now, if they can, of course is the feelings of unity on capitol hill. i was a congressional correspondent in the day. and now in my role, i flow living and working on the hill, among them as a reporter how the members come together, it is alt
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a time that many of us can recall, but the baseball game tomorrow night will be one of those moments. the teams practice on special fields and he may have been staking out the republicans given his past political strange background. but he was going after steve scalise that he had tweeted or indicated some objections to steve scalise in the past. steve scalise is apparently recovering from surgery. he says the first to reach him out on the field, when you think about it out in alexandria, he was out there beyond second base. he crawled on the ground, and he was out on the field.
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. >> it is so striking when you hear the members of congress that talk about this. they describe something that sounds like a battlefield scenario. you have scalise around second base. a staffer who was hit in the leg, there is nowhere to take cover in this scenario. you remember rand paul this morning describes on the other side of a fence watching two staffers playing in the outfield understanding if they had to lay flat or get up and try to run. this is what you hear about for a moment.
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two congressmen believe they saw this gentleman out and about this morning asking about whether or not it was the republicans or the democrats this morning. not the kind of thing that drew their attention in the moment, they see dog walkers and congressmen coming by. i was starting to think this particular interaction is od, but coming from illinois. they are coming out here, the investigative side answering how and when this gentleman got from illinois to the dc suburbs. >> and apparently, garrett, the all member closed briefing today security was a major issue. and they reported that members brought up the amount of death threats they have received and talked about offices. we also from from gabrielle
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giffords, we about to hear from adam schiff. you were a member who attended that all member briefing today? >> yes, and you're right. members are deeply concerned about security. i get a sense that many members are seeing a real escalation in the number of death threats. i think we have all gotten those threats from time to time, but they do seem to have escalated given the deterioration. . there is a real concern that this kind of thing is happening with what feels like increasing frequency. >> i want to share with you a statement from gabrielle giffords. we remember how shocking it was whin they announced that she would be doing a corner meeting with her constituents and what
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happened with her injury, and she says i'm heart broken for the pain, thankful for the great courage of the capitol police that were my protectors and friends. i know steve and everyone there this morning have up great courage and great supply. love for their friends and family and the ability to go about making this country the best. we always come back stronger. how are members feeling today? >> i think they are feeling very somber, and there is none of us that serve in a body as small as it is, it feels very small today, for those that were shot like steve, or many of the police officers that protect us
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every day, so it is deeply personal. we know each other, our families know each other, and despite the differences you see on display, many of us are friends with each other. it is a hard and sad day. it brings back sm of the painful memories. the first alert on that, the alert was that she had been killed. it really takes our breath away. >> and a lot of us that covered congress in the past, that used to just drive up and park on the plaza there a there and walk right up, before 9/11, regretted how much capital hill has becombecome an armed camp.
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and for those that have not had as much connection to personal security. >> it was a debate that we had after gabby was shot. we talked about are we going to continue to do our own office hours, and we made the decision that we could not do our job if we were not accessible to our constituents, and that will be the same conclusion that we reach now when we have big gatherings of members, we may take different precautions. it was the fer duty of te futil field, there was no security there because none of the leadership were there. that probably doesn't make sense and things like that will be revisited, but probably, you know, most within our capacity is to come together at a moment like this, show our solidarity
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for attacks with any motivation. >> adam schiff, thank you for being with us today. our hears and prayers are with all of you members of congress. bernie sanders or if ied to learn that the suspected shooter that died in the cross fire, from one of the capital police firing in response, he took to the floor to speak to the senate. >> madame president, i have been informed that the alleged shooter at the republican baseball practice this morning is someone who apparently toll tiered on my presidential campaign i am sickened by
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despicable act. let me be clear, violence of any kind is unacceptable in our society and i condemn this action in the strongest possible terms. joining us now is claire mccaskill. we're all thinking of you, the senate, and the house on a day like today. >> yeah, it is a moment where i really hope that not just those of us who serve, but the people that we serve, could put down the partisanship long enough to unite. against even. unspeakable evil in the face of common desen sis. i hope this is a moment that will bring us closer together to
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remember there are so many things that do unite us and we get caught up in the back and forth, and many times that important principal goes by the wayside. >> do you have concerns, we just heard from senator sandersings that partisans on both sides are going to try to take action because he was a member of protesting against republicans. >> this is not the first time that someone has been shot by someone who was not well and had evil in their heart if is not the last, but i think a big mistake to use this as a moment to find division among us. to take sides, to sign up for teams, to play gotcha politics. this is a moment we all need to realize that we come here for one reason and that is to serve.
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and even though we may disagree, many of us get along much better than people realize. even when we have different opinions. i hope this knits us closer together, that would be the only positive thing that would come out of a moment like this where someone attempted what would be a mass murder if it was not for our brave and courageous capital police officers. >> do you think that security has to be increased? >> we have a lot of security now, and there is some security at our offices, but i have resisted this notion. i know governors have a big security entourage. i typically don't want that. i want to talk to people at the grocery store. i want to drive myself to get a
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haircut, and talk to people in the parking lot. i want the ability to visit with the people i work for in the most natural and normal way and not have a bunch of folks around me protecting me from the people that i work we don't go too fa. maybe some common sense change it is we have a lot of people gathered at one place mike might sense. like softball practices that are comprised of members of congress. but i hope we don't go too far, because i think that would be a mistake in a country where we cherish our freedoms. >> senator claire mccaskill, thank you very much. >> thank you. >> pete williams is joining us now, our chief law correspondent. pete, obviously the suspect, the alleged shooter, has died from that crossfire. what else do we know about the investigation as to how long he may or may not have been
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tracking steve scalise and other republicans? >> reporter: we don't know whether he was tracking republicans. what we know is that he is from illinois where he was a home inspector from bellville, illinois. we know he had a run-in with the authorities in march when neighbors called the police and said they heard gunfire. the sheriff's office came out. you're looking at a picture of him. we'll get to this anti-republican groups issue in a moment. but the sheriff's office went out and talked to him and said you can't be firing your weapon near these houses. so he said okay, he would move away or go to a shooting range. but that indicates because of the number of rounds that were fired and because the sheriff says he had a rifle -- >> and pete, we've got an aerial shot of his house. you can see it's a residential area, but there is some wooded area and apparently he was shooting into those pine trees. go ahead, sorry. >> reporter: yeah.
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so that would indicate perhaps he had the rifle he used today as early as late march. what we're told by authorities is he had two weapons, that he had an assault-type rifle with multiple ammunition clips or magazines and a hand gun. we don't know yet whether he fired the hand gun or not or whether all the shots fired today were from the assault weapon. authorities have obtained a search warm. they're searching his house. neighbors say he had not been living in the house recently, and we're told by local authorities here in alexandria, virginia, that he had been in the alexandria area. that's where the baseball practice was. that he had been in this area for the past several weeks, but why he came to this area, where he was staying, whether he was in touch here, what caused him to come to the washington, d.c. area, we just don't know that yet. that's obviously something of great investigative interest on what motivated this.
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he's a person who had strong political views. he didn't hike the republicans or the president. he didn't like republican tax policy. he's been a prolific writer of letters to the local paper for the past decade or so. how much of this had to do with today's event, we are still waiting to find out. i think it's safe to say the investigators don't know the answers to those questions yet either. >> thank you so much, pete williams. the fbi is the lead on this, because it was the victims include, of course, steve scalise, a federal official. the manager of the team representative joe barden of texas, whose 10-year-old son was -- ran into the dugout and was kept hidden -- jumped under the bench there among other members was being protected as best they could during the exchange of fire. joe barden, still in his red republican baseball uniform, returned to the hill and talked to the press.
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>> came out to practice, started shooting. he start at trent kelly, our third baseman, shot at steve scalise. he hit steve scalise. scalise's security detail and capitol hill police immediately began -- to return fire. and alexandria police also immediately came and began to return fire. they shot the shooter, and i think the security detail saved a lot of lives, because they attacked the shooter. so the heroes are the capitol hill police, the alexandria police and steve scalise's security detail. >> do you know what the shooter looked like? >> he was middle aged man, blue jeans and a blue shirt.
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i think he was angelo. he had a rifle and i think pistol. >> can you please tell us what it must have been like in this idyllic tesetting, to have -- >> there's going to be all kinds of -- i'm the manager of the team. several security people were hit. one of our staffers were hit. scalise was hit. i've talked to the speaker and the capitol hill police. i'm sure there will be some sort of general statement later on. luckily no one appeared to be killed, and then i just want to thank the security detail. >> is there usually security detail? >> yeah. >> how long did it last? >> about five to ten minutes. there were dozens, if not hundreds of shots fired. it was scary. >> did you take cover? >> of course we did. >> where did you take cover? >> some of us were in the dugout, some of us were on the
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ground. my son, jack, was under an suv and he was very brave. my other son, brad, was in the batting cage, and he also was very brave. >> senator joe barton, who had two sons there, including his 10-year-old son jack. kristen welker joins me now. this is a moment that brings the country together, for the worst of possible reasons. violence against a member of congress and the police officers, the two shot were crystal brinert and david bailey. heroes both. what is the president saying today? >> reporter: you're right, andrea, and you highlight the key point we heard from the president. he stressed the need for bipartisanship, talked about the fact that, yes, there are differences, but that ultimately everyone is americans. of course, sent prayers to steve scalise and his family as he hopefully recovers quickly. the president has been on the
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phone this morning, andrea, in the wake of this shooting. he reached out to the wife of steve scalise, also to the house speaker, house majority leader. and others, the vice president also on the phone today as well. this white house has gone into response mode, effectively changing everything today. the president was set to deliver a speech to the labor department. he wanted to talk about jobs. he wanted to talk about an apprenticeship program. wanted to get back to the business of his agenda in the wake of what we saw yesterday on capitol hill. instead, he's been focused on monitoring this situation, and he canceled that speech. the vice president canceled his speech. and stop staffers have been in and out of meetings throughout the day. it is the president's 71st birthday, but not a day of celebration. instead, very somber here at the white house. andrea? >> thank you. and msnbc's hans nichols is outside washington's med star hospital where congressm maman
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scalise is being treated. hans, i know one of your basketball buddies was one of those injured, matt mika. >> reporter: for all the talk of partisanship, it's actually a community. matt mika was a basketball player, now he's a lobbyist. and there's been a community around talking about prayers and hopes of cross party lines because he has been hit four to five times, including chest wounds. he could be in bad shape. one of his friends said he was in critical condition. another said stable. so there's uncertainty on what sort of shape he's in. but four to five shots does not give you an indication that h s he's -- there is a sense here, and you look at what both nancy pelosi said, as well as what speaker paul ryan said. it seems to me that all parties are trying to -- all sides are trying to use this as a unifying moment. as a moment to get past some of
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the divisive moments. that's really one of the hopes going on today, as well as a great deal of concern for friends, classmates, housemates that just happened to be at the wrong place at the wrong time. >> and this, hans, in a residential neighborhood, a beautiful neighborhood, just miles from capitol hill across the water in alexandria, virginia. a place where many congressional staff members and other federal workers work. it's a great place to raise families. >> reporter: it's a lovely community. you can metro into town. she have some shops and restaurants to walk to. there are a lot of pentagon officials that live down in that neighborhood, because it's so close to the pentagon. when this happened this morning, i was at the pentagon and thought i might have to run down there and cover it. it's two, three miles from the pentagon. then you come into capitol hill, so it's a great place for congressional staffers to live, as well. just a little bit south of reagan national airport, if
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you've ever flown in and out of reagan national. where i am here now, this is one of the two premiere trauma centers in washington, the med star clinic. they have a lot of specialty hospitals here. part of the complex, there's a giant children's hospital here. we're just up north capital, maybe seven, eight blocks up from where the capital is on north capitol street just inside d.c. the sense of community seems to be the defining moment of today. >> that is what to remember indeed. hans, thanks to you and the whole team. and chris jansing is in alexandria to take it over right at the scene of today's shooting. chris? >> thanks so much, andrea. i am chris jansing in alexandria, virginia. howie jackson is across the river on capitol hill, and we are continuing our breaking news coverage of the congressional shooting in northern virginia. let me get you caught up on the facts. the suspect in the shooting is dead. authorities say he is

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