Trump welcomes first responders in congressional shooting to White HousePosted: Updated:
By Dan Merica CNN
WASHINGTON (CNN) -- President Donald Trump welcomed first responders from last month's shooting of Rep. Steve Scalise, a congressional staffer, a lobbyist and a member of the Capitol police force to the White House on Thursday, touting them as "real heroes" who "saved so many lives."
The event -- which comes amid the White House's "American Heroes" theme week -- included David Bailey and Crystal Griner, two US Capitol Police special agents injured during the shooting. Three officers from the Alexandria Police Department -- Nicole Battaglia, Kevin Jobe, Alexander Jensen -- were also honored at the White House event.
"These officers saved the lives of every innocent person on the field that day. Many of them friends of Mike and myself," Trump said. "They are American heroes and we salute them."
Griner, Bailey, Battaglia, Jobe and Jensen all received a medal of valor for their bravery during the attack at practice for the Congressional Baseball Game.
In addition to Scalise, a congressional staffer, Zachary Barth, was shot in the leg. Matt Mika, a lobbyist for Tyson Foods and former congressional staffer, was also shot.
[ORIGINAL STORY: Gunman opens fire at Congressional baseball practice]
James Hodgkinson, 66, of Belleville, Illinois, was later identified as the shooter. Hodgkinson died following a shootout with authorities.
Scalise, the third-ranking member of House Republican leadership, was the most gravely injured in the shooting. Shot in the hip, Scalise was released from MedStar Washington Hospital Center on Wednesday, six weeks after he was shot.
Scalise did not attend the event at the White House, but his wife, Jennifer Scalise, was present and acknowledged by Trump.
"Steve is a fighter, we have known that for a long time. This week he was discharged from the hospital and is now beginning weeks of rehabilitation," Trump said. "He will recover. We are praying for him. We are pulling for him and we are sending his family our support and our love."
The shooting rocked Republicans and Democrats on Capitol Hill, leading lawmakers to call for more civility between the parties.
The shooting, which occurred as Republican lawmakers practices for the Congressional Baseball Game, led to an outpouring support for the bipartisan event. The event raised $1.5 million.
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