Vice President Mike Pence and his wife, Karen, praised the heroism of the Capitol Police and the courage of House Minority Whip Steve Scalise, R-La., on Thursday.
The Pences visited MedStar Washington Hospital Center, where Scalise and Capitol Police agent Crystal Griner still remain. Scalise is in critical condition after the Wednesday shooting in which James Hodgkinson, 66, fired on a group of congressional Republicans as they were practicing for a baseball game.
— Vice President Pence (@VP) June 15, 2017
“Karen & I just left @MedStarWHC. Thanked docs & staff. Keep @SteveScalise, Officer Griner & all involved & their loved ones in your prayers,” Pence tweeted.
Karen & I are praying for @SteveScalise, the Capitol Police, & all hurt for a speedy recovery. Our hearts are with them & their loved ones.
— Vice President Pence (@VP) June 14, 2017
Pence spoke about the event later in the day while in Miami at a conference with Central American leaders.
“We’re especially thankful for the brave police officers that ran into danger without regard to their personal safety,” Pence said. “The courageous actions … saved lives and prevented an even greater tragedy, and the American people are grateful.”
Pence said he and his wife were praying for those injured and their families.
“When a neighbor is hurting or under attack, the American people come together with generosity, compassion and prayer, and we always will,” Pence said.
For Pence, the shooting is personal.
“I served with many of these congressmen. They’re my friends, including Rep. Steve Scalise, who is seriously wounded — but I can say with confidence that he continues to receive the best possible medical care,” Pence said.
“Congressman Scalise is a good man, he’s a principled leader and a patriot,” he said. “Steve loves this country and his service does credit to the people of his state and the people of this nation.”
Griner was shot in the ankle when she and agent David Bailey confronted Hodgkinson. Lawmakers at the event said the police response saved their lives.
“I know as sure as I’m standing here right now that there’s no way we would have lived through that,” said Rep. Mike Bishop, R-Mich.
“The problem is that he’s got a rifle and they’ve got handguns, and it’s not a fair fight at that point in time,” Bishop said. “They knew they weren’t going to probably hit him. They just were trying to give us cover.”
“The word ‘hero’ is thrown around a lot, especially in public safety, but clearly she exemplified what a true hero is all about,” said Kim Dine, a former chief of the Capitol Police, of Griner.
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Source: Western Journalism