Senator Bernie Sanders has issued a statement on the shooting at a Republican Congressional baseball team practice. The Democratic Senator offered his prayers and condemned the act of violence.
Mr. Sanders tweeted that: "Our prayers go out for a full recovery of Rep. Scalise, the congressional aides and police who were injured," Mr Sanders said in a tweet. "We’ve got to stop the violence."
The gunman, who has been identified as James T. Hodgkinson, has been linked to the Senator's campaign.
Mr Hodgkinson, who died in police custody, appears to have been a Sanders supporter. Mr Sanders quickly issued a follow-up statement in response to the reports saying that:
"Let me be as clear as I can be. Violence of any kind is unacceptable in our society and I condemn this action in the strongest possible terms".
Mr Hodgkinson opened fire on a routine Republican baseball practise in Alexandria, Virginia. Twenty-five Republican members of Congress and their aides were gathered on the field in advance of a bipartisan game the next day.
Majority Whip Steve Scalise, two Capitol Police officers and five people were shot. Two were transported to George Washington Hospital in critical condition.
Reports from witnesses, who include Senator Rand Paul, said Mr Hodgkinson appeared to have been armed with a semi-automatic weapon.
Sanders has been criticized for his views on gun control. This was especially the case during his 2016 campaign for the Democratic presidential nomination. Sanders supports instant background checks and bans on semi-automatic weapons. He also voted five times against the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act.