Rep. Scalise well enough to talk – and text

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NEW YORK, NY - DECEMBER 12: U.S. House Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-LA) speaks to the media after a meeting at Trump Tower on December 12, 2016 in New York City. President-elect Donald Trump continues to hold meetings with potential members of his cabinet at his office. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

WASHINGTON —   Near death one week ago today, House Majority Whip Steve Scalise apparently is well enough now to grab a visitor’s phone and start texting from his hospital bed.

Rep. Scalise, of Metairie, the third highest-ranking member of the House of Representatives, was shot in the hip with a bullet from a high-velocity rifle on June 13, as he and other congressional Republicans practiced for an annual charity baseball game.

When Scalise arrived at MedStar Washington Hospital after the shooting, the doctor who treated him said Scalise had gone into shock from blood loss and his condition was “as critical as it could be.”

One week later, House Speaker Paul Ryan gave a reporter a surprising update.

Rep. Ryan, who said he saw Scalise in the hospital on Friday, said, “He’s breathing on his own (and) he’s talking,” adding that Scalise “grabbed somebody’s phone and started texting away.”

“So he’s doing — he’s doing a lot better,” said Ryan. “Please keep him in your prayers.”

Rep. Scalise is expected to remain in the hospital for several more weeks as doctors repair the damage to his hip and internal organs. But Dr. Sava said last week that he expects Scalise to make a full recovery.