WASHINGTON (WOFL FOX 35) - Congressman Ron DeSantis says he was lucky he left congressional baseball practice early, this morning.
“Had I stayed, I'd have been in a very different position. I do well with the glove at third base but not well enough to stop bullets,” DeSantis quipped, “that's just the reality.”
The Florida republican jokes now, but it was a deadly serious morning. “Some of my teammates who saw me leave a little early came up to me and said 'You're lucky you did that, because you were first in line of fire and I don't think you guys would be here right now, had you not done that,” he said.
DeSantis says he and another congressman were just leaving congressional baseball practice this morning when a strange man walked up to their car.
“He just asked us whether they were Republicans or Democrats out there,” DeSantis recalled, “Jeff told him Republicans, and he turned and walked towards the field.”
It was just after that, police say James Hodgkinson opened fire, critically wounding House Majority Whip Steve Scalise and injuring several others.
“We reported it to the capitol police, let them know and once the individual was identified and we saw his photo, I asked Jeff, 'That's the guy, isn't it?' and he said, 'Yeah, I think so!' and I was like 'Yeah, that was him!'” DeSantis said.
DeSantis has been in Congress for the last four years and says he’s seen a disturbing trend. “A lot of us have noticed and increase in threats in the last six to eight months, and threats against me, they want me dead, whatever, but against my wife, my daughter, there's some sick stuff out there,” he said.
Despite this, DeSantis says congressmen can't live or work in a bubble. He says if they decide to hold the congressional baseball game as scheduled, he will take the field.