WASHINGTON, D.C. — On Wednesday, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) said, in prepared remarks delivered on the House floor, that he was “sickened” that the man who shot Rep. Steve Scalise (R-AL), and wounded four others, volunteered for his presidential campaign in Iowa.
Sanders condemned the shooting carried out by James T. Hodgkinson, 66:
I have just been informed that the alleged shooter at the Republican baseball practice is someone who apparently volunteered on my presidential campaign. I am sickened by this despicable act. Let me be as clear as I can be. Violence of any kind is unacceptable in or society and I condemn this action in the strongest possible terms. Real change can only come about through nonviolent action, and anything else runs counter to our most deeply held American values.
I know I speak for the entire country in saying that my hopes and prayers are that Representative Scalise, congressional staff and the Capitol Police Officers who were wounded, make a quick and full recovery. I also want to thank the Capitol Police for their heroic actions to prevent further harm.
According to Politico, Sanders aides would not allow reporters to question the senator. Instead, they handed out the prepared statement Sanders read on the House floor.
Hodgkinson, who was neutralized by Capitol Hill Police, was a member of many left-wing, anti-Republican groups, including “Terminate The Republican Party.” Breitbart News also reported that other groups he was part of include:
- I do not like Trump, Cruz, the TeaParty! or “Hate-Radio” Damn! Damn! Damn!
- Expose Republican Fraud
- Boycott The Republican Party
- Liberal Democratic Socialist Party
- Investigation of Russian Interference in the 2016 Presidential Election
- I Hate Donald Trump
- Our Revolution Street Team
- Boycott the Koch Brothers Industries and Products.
- Healthcare & Education Berners United to Resist Trump
- JOIN THE OCCUPY ARMY!
Hodgkinson wrote several to his local paper, the Belleville News Democrat, criticizing Republicans, tax policy, and income inequality.
Rep. Mark Walker (R-NC) told a reporter that Hodgkinson “was there to kill as many Republican members as possible.”
In addition to Scalise, Zachary Barth, Matt Mika, Special Agent David Bailey, and Special Agent Crystal Griner were also shot.