U.S. Rep. Steve Scalise appeared on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives on Thursday morning for the first time since he was shot by Belleville-area native James Hodgkinson.
“You have no idea how good this feels to be back here in the people’s House,” said the Republican congressman from Louisiana.
Scalise’s colleagues welcomed him with a standing ovation as he took a podium. He stood on his own, though he used two canes as he walked to the microphone.
He thanks U.S. Capitol Police, people who were on the ball field and for the health care providers who helped him learn to walk again after he was shot in the hip by Hodgkinson on June 14.
Never miss a local story.
Scalise said he admired the support from both Democrats and Republicans after the shooting. He called the shooting an attack on the freedom and the U.S. Constitution and government.
“As we’re fighting through the issues of the day, let’s just keep in mind that we rise above the challenges of the day,” Scalise said in a roughly 15-minute speech. “People all around the world are counting on us for freedom, and we will deliver for them.”
Hodgkinson opened fire at a congressional baseball practice on June 14. Hodgkinson shot two Capitol police officers, a congressional staffer and a lobbyist, as well as Scalise. Hodgkinson was killed in an exchange of gunfire with police at the scene.
Scalise will be on “60 Minutes” Sunday, in his first interview since the shooting.