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Republican congressman shot at baseball game 'remains in critical condition' tonight

Five people were shot by gunman James Hodgkinson, who also lost his life, during the incident.

U.S.-VIRGINIA-REPUBLICAN CONGRESSMEN-GUNSHOT The aftermath of the shooting at the baseball field Source: Yin Bogu/Xinhua News Agency/PA Images

Updated at 9.13pm

AMERICAN REPUBLICAN POLITICIAN Steve Scalise, one of five people shot by a gunman during practice for a charity baseball game, remainS in critical condition following surgery, the hospital treating said this evening.

“Representative Scalise was critically injured and remains in critical condition,” MedStar Washington Hospital said in a statement via Twitter. Earlier in the day his condition had been described as stable, and he had spoken by telephone with his wife.

The gunman, identified in the media as 66-year-old James T Hodgkinson, earlier died in a shootout with police.

Two members of the Capitol Police were injured but are reportedly in good condition.

Lobbyist Matt Mika, hit several times in the shooting, remains in critical condition at George Washington University Hospital.

The fifth victim, congressional aide Zack Barth, tweeted that he was in the hospital and “okay”.

Earlier this afternoon it emerged that Hodgkinson, who shot Scalise at the charity game in Alexandria, Virginia, had died, US president Donald Trump has said.

Several shots

Trump, speaking  from the Diplomatic Room in the White House following the event, said that Hodgkinson had died from his injuries.

The practice was being held for a charity game between Democrat and Republican representatives.

CBS News reports that a gunman with a rifle fired several shots, and injured several people at the baseball field. Local police have said one person has been arrested.

“Five people were transported medically from the scene,” Alexandria police chief Michael Brown told a press conference.

Speaking from the White House, Trump paid respect to the men who were caught up in the incident.

“Everyone on that field is a public servant,” he said.

“Our courageous police, our congressional aides, who work so tirelessly behind the scenes with enormous devotion, and our dedicated members of congress who represent our people.

We may have our differences, but we do well in times like this to remember that everyone who serves in our nation’s capitol is here because, above all, they love our country.

Trump earlier said said he is ‘deeply saddened’ by news of the shooting, but said that Scalise would make a full recovery.

donald trump scalise Source: Donald J Trump/Twitter

A congressional aide has said Scalise is in stable condition at George Washington University Hospital. House Speaker Paul Ryan’s office said Scalise’s wounds were not believed to be life-threatening and that a member of the security detail was also shot.

‘Not an accident’

Steve Scalise Republican Steve Scalise Source: Alex Brandon/AP Photo

About 25 senators and congressmen were at the practice, according to Senator Jeff Flake who told reporters some 50 shots rang out in the exchange of fire between the gunman and the lawmakers’ security detail, at around 6:30 am local time.

Flake said the suspect was a white man with dark hair, apparently in his 40s or 50s, wearing jeans and a blue shirt.

Asked whether he thought it was a random shooting, Republican Mo Brooks told CNN: “It sure as heck wasn’t an accident.”

Brooks said several other people also were hit, including two law enforcement officers.

He said that Scalise, 51, was down on the ground with what Brooks described as “a hip wound.”

“People know this is the Republican baseball team practicing,” he said. “You can tell. You can recognise many of us. You can see our security detail.

It is pretty well known at the neighborhood who those folks are on the baseball field and where we practice.
He knew who we were. I’m a former prosecutor and, yeah, he was going after elected officials, congressmen.

Another Republican representative Mike Bishop said Scalise was standing on second base when he was shot.

“I was looking right at him,” Bishop told Detroit radio station WWJ. “He was a sitting duck.”

Scalise’s office released a statement to say the congressman is now in “good spirits” and is undergoing surgery.

Alexandria Police have said that a suspect is in custody, and that victims are currently being transported to hospitals.

Speaking on CNN Republican Rand Paul described the “rapid succession of shots” which were followed by Scalise not moving.

He claimed that the only reason the practice had such strong security in the form of US Capital Police because Scalise, with such a high seniority level in congress, was there.

Other US politicians have been tweeting their support for Scalise after the news emerged.

With reporting from the Associated Press and AFP

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Sean Murray

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