Hoyer Speaks in Regards to the Shootings in Tucson, Arizona on the House Floor

See video

... time. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. the gentleman from arizona. million pastor: i yield four -- mr. pastor: i yield four minutes to the gentleman from maryland, mr. hoyer. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from maryland is recognized for four minutes. mr. hoyer: i thank the gentleman from arizona for yielding. madam speaker, this week we pause the work of the house to mourn the loss of lives of six of our fellow citizens. one of those born on that day of tragedy and carnage when thousands were slain and equally -- in an equally indiscriminate, heinous act of hate. citizens shot dead on saturday in tucson in pursuit of the right to peaceably assemble. . the amendment which gabrielle giffords read on this floor. we come as well to honor those who risked their lives to save others. to pray for the lives of the wounded. and to pray for our colleague and friend, congresswoman gabrielle giffords. today this tellble of representative democracy -- tell am of representative democracy is -- temple of representative democracy is a sadder place. but representative giffords' intelligence and toughness, her public spirit and her charm will, god willing, and with the extraordinary med edcal care she is receiving -- medical care she is receiving, soon return to this body. and again be a practitioner and a model for the principles of civil debate and thoughtful deliberation on which this temple is founded. congresswoman giffords was attacked doing the work that is the heart of democracy as has been so eloquently observed by our speaker, mr. boehner. listening to her neighbors, listening to those who sent her here to washington to reflect their views. each one of us have done that work, each one of us has come back bearing their fears and their hopes, their convictions and their visions for the future. some of course are everyday hopes, some are matters of life and death. but in each case we bring these hopes here and speak to our neighbors as best we can. that is what congresswoman giffords was doing. we do not know, of course, the specific motive which led the perpetrator of this crime to act. nor can we draw conclusions as to specific causes. but it seems to me it is a time for us to reflect on the heightened anger being projected on our public debate. and the daily denigration of those with whom we disagree and it is appropriate therefore that the wrenching, shocking, senseless violence of that day compel us to reflect on our own represent -- responsibility to tell per our words -- temper our words and rcht those with whom we disagree. let the failure to do so give incitement to the angriest and most unstable among us. let us speak for our neighbors in a spirit of unity. not a false and shallow unity, not a unity that wishes away our differences or our discords, but a unity founded on our reverence for our democracy's most precious, most franl ilgift, its power -- fragile gift, its power to resolve without violence our questions. in a much darker time than ours, from the edge of a great war, president lincoln addressed these words to the men and women whom even in the war's depths he refused to see as anything other than his fellow americans, he said this, we are not enemies but friends. we must not be enemies, though passion may have strained, it must not break our bonds of affection. there are in every society and in every culture and every nation those who reflect that cede -- creed, but if we love our country, if we honor our oath to country, constitution and to our nation of laws, we must live by those words. ...