Metro

New England’s congressional delegation stunned by Alexandria, Va., shootings

US Representative William Keating started his morning Wednesday by working out in the gym and tuning into cable news broadcasts. When he heard about the shooting at a Congressional baseball team practice, he was stunned.

Keating said the initial shock quickly gave way to a feeling of “personal concern” for everyone at the field that morning. He immediately thought of his fellow Congressmen and their staff, and what their families must be going through.

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“They’re all our colleagues, we get to see them every day,” said Keating, in a telephone interview.

Keating said he was also concerned for the safety of the Capitol police who were at the scene, and praised them for their actions.

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If the officers had not been there, Keating said, “it could have been much worse.....They saved lives.”

Keating does not play in the Congressional Baseball Game, which is a tradition that dates back to 1909. Those who do play take it rather seriously, and it’s not unusual for practices to be held early in the morning,” he said.

Only one New Englander — Senator Chris Murphy, a Democrat from Connecticut — is playing in this year’s baseball game. (He was on the Democrat team roster in 2016, too). Upon hearing the news of the shooting, Murphy tweeted: “Oh my god.” He later followed up with another post. “We are all pulling for you @SteveScalise,” he wrote. “My heart is with you, the Capitol Police, and everyone who was on the scene.”

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Other members of the New England’s congressional delegation also turned to Twitter Wednesday morning to express their shock and extend sympathies those affected by the shooting.

US Representative Joe Kennedy III tweeted: “Praying for @SteveScalise, staff, Capitol Police and other victims of this horrific attack.”

US Senator Ed Markey wrote: “To @SteveScalise,the other shooting victims and their families: I am praying for you. You have the strength of our nation w/ you right now.” Markey later added, “I, and all of my Congressional colleagues, cannot thank the @CapitolPolice enough for their service to our safety each and every day.”

US Representative Katherine Clark wrote: “I’m horrified by the shooting at Congressional baseball practice. Praying for the safety of my colleagues, their staff and Capitol Police.”

Senator Elizabeth Warren said: “My thoughts are with @SteveScalise, all those injured, and the brave Capitol Police who protect us every day.”

Representative Stephen Lynch tweeted: “Praying for @SteveScalise, congressional staff members, Capitol Police, and all those affected by this morning’s horrific shooting.”

Representative Jim McGovern retweeted an update on Scalise’s condition and wrote: “Glad to hear @SteveScalise is in stable condition and getting care he needs. We are all praying for his speedy recovery.”

Representative Seth Moulton wrote: “Thinking of @SteveScalise and my other colleagues practicing for the big game tomorrow night. We must act to put an end to this violence.”

Representative Bruce Poliquin, a Republican from Maine, tweeted to let his constituents know that he was safe. “We are extending all of our thoughts & prayers to everyone involved in this morning’s attack,” he added.

Senator Susan Collins of Maine praised the actions of the Capitol police. “Every day we see the skill and professionalism of the Capitol Police,” she wrote on Twitter. “Today, we were reminded of their incredible courage.”

Representative Annie Kuster of New Hampshire also weighed in. “Horrified by violence at Congressional baseball practice,” she wrote. “Praying for my colleagues, their staff, & first responders.”

Senator Jeanne Shaheen of New Hampshire tweeted: “Very concerned for @SteveScalise& all those hurt this AM. Also thoughts are w/ @CapitolPolice who risk their lives to protect Congress.”

Senator Maggie Hassan wrote: “My prayers are with @SteveScalise, Capitol Police, and others injured following horrific shooting this morning.”

In a series of tweets, Congressman David Cicilline of Rhode Island described the shooting as “horrible news” and wrote that he was keeping “Scalise, staff, and the Capitol Police who were at the ballpark this morning in my thoughts and prayers.”

He later added: “On this sad day, I say to all my colleagues, on both sides of the aisle: Thank you for your service.”

“All of us who serve are extraordinarily grateful to the men and women of the @CapitolPolice for their service and bravery.”

Emily Sweeney can be reached at esweeney@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @emilysweeney.
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