ABC News’ Matthew Jaffe reports:
Before traveling to Arizona with President Obama for tonight’s memorial service, House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi said she will tell the people of Tucson that their “sense of community” has inspired the country in the wake of last weekend’s shooting that left her colleague Gabrielle Giffords fighting for her life.
“When I go there I will bring the prayers and thoughts of members of Congress to Gabby’s family and to the staff who were affected. The sense of community that is emanating from Tucson is having a very positive effect on our country,” Pelosi told reporters outside a closed-door security briefing on Capitol Hill.
“Tucson thriving together – the theme of their service tonight – is a very very important one for our entire country,” she said. “Whether it’s the people who responded immediately very courageously, whether it’s the first responders who came to the scene in a matter of minutes, whether it’s the hospital staff that’s taking such beautiful care of all of those who were endangered – we are deeply grateful to all of them. A sense of community – the strength of our country – in this sad tragedy, we congratulate the people of Tucson for their sense of community and their love of Gabby Gifford.”
Another House Democrat, Rep. Jesse Jackson of Illinois, now wants to increase the budgets for members of Congress so they can bolster security in their district offices, in part by undoing Republican cuts made just a week ago.
“Inevitably members of Congress can be security targets and we need to do something about that,” Jackson told reporters.
“After 9-11 members of Congress did not secure their district offices – that’s a problem. I don’t have to tell them – the American people already know. They saw it themselves.”