“For what purpose does the gentleman from Louisiana seek recognition?” U.S House Speaker Paul Ryan asked, with a laugh.
“To speak out of order, Mr. Speaker,” Congressman Steve Scalise responded, to cheers and applause from then entire House , as well as a packed gallery.
“The gentleman is recognized for as much time as he may consume,” Ryan acknowledged.
“Wow! Thank you, Mr. Speaker,” replied Scalise, grinning ear to ear. “You have no idea how great this feels to back here, at work in the people’s House.”
Supported by wrist-embracing crutches, Louisiana congressman and U.S. House Majority Whip Steve Scalise received a standing ovation and long minutes of applause when he returned to the House floor Thursday, for the first time since being shot June 14th while practicing for the congressional charity baseball game.
“I’m definitely a living example that miracles really do happen,” Scalise told the Chamber.
And in a CBS “60 Minutes” interview that will air this coming Sunday night, Scalise talks about the physical reality of that miracle, saying he remembers little of the first four days following the shooting.
“I found out later just how much damage was done internally,” Scalise tells CBS reporter Norah O’Donnell. “You know, my femur was shattered. The hip and pelvis had serious damage where the bullet went through and areas had to be shored up with steel plates. And they did a phenomenal job of rebuilding Humpty Dumpty.”
During his House speech yesterday, the Louisiana 1st District Republican spoke of the spiritual anchor that enabled him to survive and battle back.
“When I was laying out on that ballfield, the first thing I did once I was down and I couldn’t move anymore, is I just started to pray. And I will tell you, it gave me an unbelievable sense of calm.”
Scalise thanked his security detail that day – two of whom were also shot. He thanked his doctors, his colleagues in Congress, his friends, family, and most especially his wife, Jennifer. He also had a message for everyone – near, far, personally known and unknown -- all who sent their prayers toward him and his family:
“I want to thank each and every one of you for that. It just means more to me than you can imagine. So thanks for all of that love, and warmth and prayers.”
Welcome back, Steve.