James T. Hodgkinson, the progressive Democrat who shot and wounded five people Wednesday at a congressional baseball practice, carried with him a list of Republicans he wanted to assassinate, according to a new report citing sources close to the investigation.
Hodgkinson, a 66-year-old home inspector and activist who volunteered on the presidential campaign of Sen. Bernie Sanders, took a rifle and a pistol and dozens of rounds of ammo to Simpson Park in Alexandria, Virginia, Wednesday morning. Shortly after 7 a.m., he began shooting at a group of congressmen and their aides who were in the middle of a practice session. They were practicing for the annual charity baseball game to be played the next day, on Thursday, at National’s Field, which is a 100-year-old tradition in Washington.
But the existence of the list, confirmed by “multiple sources” to the Daily Caller, indicates the attack was a pre-planned political assassination rather than a random act of rage.
The handwritten list on notepad paper was found in the shooter’s pocket, sources told the Daily Caller. They spoke on condition of anonymity, citing the sensitivity of the investigation.
The names on the list included Rep. Mo Brooks, R-Ala.; Rep. Jeff Duncan, R-S.C.; and Rep. Trent Franks, R-Ariz., the DC reported. All three are members of the House Freedom Caucus, which is a bloc of conservative House members. It is not known how many other names may have been on Hodgkinson’s list. Brooks and Duncan were at the practice.
Niether Brooks, Duncan or Franks would comment on the note Friday.
The FBI has contacted at least one of the three congressmen to inform them of their inclusion on the list.
WND was the first news agency to identify all 16 GOP members of Congress present at the field Wednesday morning – 14 House members along with Sens. Rand Paul of Kentucky and Jeff Flake of Arizona.
Rep. Ron DeSantis, R-Fla., and Rep. Jeff Duncan, R-S.C., had left the field early and actually crossed paths with the shooter in the parking lot. Hodgkinson asked them if the players on the field were Republicans or Democrats. Duncan told him “Republicans,” and Hodgkinson promptly got his guns and returned to the field shooting.
Along with Brooks, Duncan, DeSantis, Flake and Paul, others on the field included Reps. Mike Bishop, R-Mich.; Roger Williams, R-Texas; Mark Walker, R-N.C.; Brad Wenstrup, R-Ohio; Rodney Davis, R-Ill.; Mike Conaway, R-Texas; Joe Barton, R-Texas; Trent Kelly, R-Miss.; Chuck Fleischmann, R-Tenn.; Jack Bergman, R-Mich.; and Barry Loudermilk, R-Ga.
Duncan said the shooting has “changed the world” for lawmakers, opening up a debate over whether all members of congress should have security details and whether congressmen should be allowed to carry concealed weapons while in Washington, D.C.