Scalise joins list of attacked federal lawmakers - Tucson News Now

Scalise joins list of attacked federal lawmakers

U.S. House Rep. Steve Scalise was wounded Wednesday in a shooting in Alexandria, VA. (Source: Official photo) U.S. House Rep. Steve Scalise was wounded Wednesday in a shooting in Alexandria, VA. (Source: Official photo)

(RNN) - When Rep. Steve Scalise, the House majority whip, was shot Wednesday morning, he joined an unenviable list of federal lawmakers attacked since America's founding. 

Preceding Scalise was U.S. Rep. Gabrielle "Gabby" Giffords, D-AZ. She was left with a severe brain injury after she was shot during an assassination attempt Jan. 8, 2011, while meeting with constituents near a Tucson supermarket. 

On Nov. 18, 1978, U.S. Rep. Leo Ryan Jr., D-CA, was shot to death in Guyana, South America by members of the Peoples Temple Jonestown settlement hours before the group committed mass suicide. His assassination was the second for a sitting member of the House. 

On June 5, 1968, Sen. Robert F. Kennedy, D-NY, a former U.S. attorney general under his late brother, President John F. Kennedy, was shot to death in a Los Angeles, CA, hotel while seeking the presidency. He was murdered by Sirhan Sirhan, a Palestinian with Jordanian citizenship, who is serving a life sentence in San Diego, CA. 

Five lawmakers were among those attacked on a single day, March 1, 1954. Puerto Rican nationalists seeking independence shot five lawmakers on the House floor. The injured were Alvin M. Bentley, R-MI; Rep. Clifford Davis, D-TN; George H. Fallon, D-MD; Ben F. Jensen, R-IA; and Kenneth A. Roberts, D-AL. All the representatives recovered. The assailants received long sentences. 

Other dates on which federal lawmakers were attacked include these: 

On Sept. 8, 1935, Sen. Huey Long, D-LA, was shot a few weeks after announcing he would seek the presidency. He died two days later. His bodyguards instantly killed his attacker, a Louisiana doctor, Carl Weiss. Weiss' attack on Long came after Long said his top priority would be to pass a bill to remove from the bench Weiss' father-in-law, Judge Benjamin Henry Pavy, a longtime Long opponent.

On October 22, 1868, U.S. Rep. James M. Hinds, R-AR, died after Ku Klux Klan member George Clark used a shotgun to kill the supporter of civil rights for former slaves. The killer was never found. He was the first sitting member of Congress assassinated. 

On Sept. 13, 1859, Sen. David Broderick, D-CA, engaged in a duel prompted by a disagreement over slavery. He and his former friend, Chief Justice of California David S. Terry, who supported a pro-slavery candidate, took their feud to Lake Merced, eight miles south of San Francisco. Broderick died of his wound three days later.

On August 28, 1831, U.S. Rep. Spencer Pettis, a Jackson party member, and Army officer Thomas Biddle both died in duel after shooting each other at close range on Bloody Island, a Mississippi River sandbar. Their feud involved the U.S. Bank in Philadelphia, which Biddle's brother ran.

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