Rep. Mark Sanford (R-S.C.) said President Trump is “partially” to blame for the hostility in the nation that led to the shooting of House Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.) and others at a congressional baseball practice.

“I would argue the president has unleashed, partially, again not in anyway totally, but partially to blame for the demons that have been unleashed,” Sanford said Thursday on MSNBC's "Morning Joe." 

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He referenced Trump's remarks during the campaign that he'd like to punch a protester in the face, saying the comments were “bizarre” and “we’ve ought to call it as such.” 

“They’ll say, ‘If the guy at the top can say anything to anybody any time, why can’t I?' ” Sanford said.

He said he believes many on Capitol Hill are taking the time for some “heavy soul-searching" after Wednesday's shooting, which left Scalise in critical condition and four others injured.