Louisiana representative Steve Scalise is out of the hospital. Six weeks after suffering life-threatening injuries after being shot at a congressional baseball practice, the House Majority Whip was discharged from MedStar Washington Hospital Center on Tuesday, the center said in a statement.
Scalise “has made excellent progress in his recovery,” the statement said. The 51-year-old was one of five people shot on June 14 at a Virginia baseball field and suffered the worst injuries. He was hit in the hip with a bullet that broke bones, damaged organs, and caused severe bleeding, doctors said. Nine days and several surgeries after the shooting he was moved out of the ICU, but returned on July 6 as doctors feared the spread of an infection.
Scalise is “now beginning a period of intensive inpatient rehabilitation,” the hospital’s statement said. “He is in good spirits and is looking forward to his return to work once he completes rehabilitation.”
Just how long that will take is unclear. Fox News says Scalise is “expected to be in the rehabilitation facility for weeks recovering.” That doesn’t mean he will be completely left out of working with his friends in the House, though. Ten days after the shooting, before the infection worries emerged, Scalise called into a GOP whip meeting and told members he was eager to get back to work. House Speaker Paul Ryan tweeted Wednesday that he can’t wait for that.
Whenever it is that Scalise does make his return to the Capitol, he will, no doubt, get a tremendous reception. But despite all the calls for civility in the aftermath of his shooting, he’ll find that little has changed. The caustic rhetoric that some blamed for influencing Scalise’s attacker hasn’t gone anywhere. And the best example of that comes from one of his colleagues —the GOP congressman who used Scalise’s shooting to cut an ad for his Senate campaign.