By Jennifer Calfas
June 14, 2017

House Speaker Paul Ryan delivered an emotional speech to his congressional colleagues Wednesday — hours after a top Republican was shot during a practice for an annual bipartisan charity baseball game.

Speaking on the House floor, Ryan called for unity among Congress members and thanked Capitol police officers for their quick response.

“We are united in our shock. We are united in our anguish,” Ryan said. “An attack on one of us is an attack on all of us.”

House Majority Whip Steve Scalise was shot in the hip while Republican members of Congress and members of their staff practiced at a Virginia baseball field early in the morning. Five victims, including two Capitol Police officers, were taken to the hospital, police said. President Donald Trump said the suspected shooter, identified as James Hodgkinson, of Illinois, died from his injuries.

Ryan received a standing ovation from lawmakers from both parties in the House chamber.
“Every day, we come here to test and challenge each other,” he said. “We feel so deeply about the things we fight for and believe in. At times, our emotions can get the best of us. We are all imperfect. But we do not shed our humanity when we enter this chamber.”

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi also delivered a speech, where she said Republicans and Democrats will still come together for their annual baseball game Thursday, and called the shooter’s actions “cowardly.”

“We cannot let that be a victory for the assailant or anyone who would think that way,” Pelosi said. “So tomorrow we’ll go out on the field, we’ll root for our team, we want everyone to do his or her very best, and we will use this occasion as one that brings us together and not separates us further.”

Read Ryan’s full speech from the House floor in the text below:

My colleagues, there are very strong emotions throughout this House today. We are all horrified by this dreadful attack on our friends and on our colleagues, and those who serve and protect this Capitol.

We are all praying for those who were attacked and for their families — Steve Scalise, Zachary Barth, Matt Mika, special agent David Bailey, special agent Krystal Griner. We are all giving our thoughts to those currently being treated for their injuries at this moment.

And we are united. We are united in our shock. We are united in our anguish. An attack on one of us is an attack on all of us.

I know we want to give our thanks to the first responders and the Alexandria Police Department, who were on the scene in minutes. And I know this House wants to state unequivocally that we are, as ever, awed by the tremendous bravery of the Capitol Police.

I spoke with Special Agent Bailey and Special Agent Griner this morning. I expressed our profound gratitude to them. It is clear to me, based on eyewitness accounts, that without these heroes, Agents Bailey and Griner, many lives would have been lost.

I know we all want to learn as much as we can about what happened. We just received a briefing from the Sergeant at Arms. I have complete confidence in the investigation that is being conducted by the Capitol Police working with local law enforcement. I know we want to extend our gratitude for the outpouring of support we have received from throughout the Capitol and from throughout the country.

Now, knowing Steve Scalise as we all do, he is likely really frustrated that he will not be able to play in the baseball game. I also know that Steve wants all of us to commend the bravery of those who came to the aid of the wounded. In the coming days, we will hear their stories, and we will have the chance to hold up their heroism.

My colleagues, there are many memories from this day we will want to forget, and many images we will not want to see again. But there is one image in particular that this House should keep. And that is a photo I saw of our Democratic colleagues gathered in prayer this morning after hearing the news.

You know, every day, we come here to test and challenge each other. We feel so deeply about the things we fight for and believe in. At times, our emotions can get the best of us. We are all imperfect. But we do not shed our humanity when we enter this chamber.

For all the noise and fury, we are one family. These were our brothers and sisters in the line of fire. These were our brothers and sisters who ran into danger and saved countless lives.

So before this House returns to its business, I want us to slow down and reflect, to think about how we are being tested right now. Because we are. I ask each of you to join me in resolving to come together…to lift each other up…and to show the country — show the world — that we are one House. The people’s House — united in our humanity.

It is that humanity which will win the day. It always will.

God bless. I yield.

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