Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said Thursday he was “shocked” by reports of a Republican lawmaker cursing out teenage Senate pages.

“I was shocked when I heard about it, and I am further shocked at his refusal to apologize to these young people,” Schumer said while speaking on the floor Thursday night ahead of the National Defense Authorization Act passage.

When Rep. Derrick Van Orden (R-Wis.) saw a group of Senate pages lying on the floor of the Capitol Rotunda and taking pictures Wednesday night, he called them “pieces of s—” and told them to “get the f— up” off the floor, according to a transcript of the remarks obtained by The Hill.

Van Orden, a freshman congressman, told the pages “Wake the f‑‑‑ up you little s‑‑‑‑. … What the f‑‑‑ are you all doing? Get the f‑‑‑ out of here. You are defiling the space you [pieces of s‑‑‑],” according to the transcript written by a page. Punchbowl News first reported the incident.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell backed Schumer’s defense of the pages, saying he would like to “associate myself with the remarks of the majority leader” and “everybody on this side of the aisle feels exactly the same way.”

Speaker Kevin McCarthy told reporters on Friday that he had spoken with Schumer about the Van Orden incident, but hadn’t yet spoken with the Wisconsin Republican.

“I haven’t been able to speak to [him]. I’ll call him today. I don’t know this situation. I saw what was reported. That’s not their normal Derrick Van Orden,” McCarthy said, adding, “I guess the interns have some ritual laying down or something like that. I think it’s a misunderstanding.”

Van Orden defended his remarks in a statement to various news outlets, stating “our nation’s Capitol is a symbol of the sacrifice our servicemen and women have made for this country and should never be treated like a frat house common room.”

In a statement to POLITICO, Van Orden’s office took aim at the majority leader: “Chuck Schumer should think twice before throwing stones from glass houses,” spokesperson Anna Kelly said in a statement.

In a brief interview with POLITICO Thursday night, Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) gave his own praise to the pages.

“Only talking about that person, we only diminish the greatness of these young people. They’re phenomenal people and come here and make a big sacrifice,” Booker said. “They’re smart, they’re dedicated, they believe in this country in its highest ideals, and we should be elevating them.”

Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash.) posted to Twitter, “My message to the Senate Pages: This is one of the most amazing experiences you’ll ever have. Take it in. Learn a lot. And of course, have fun.”

“My message to out-of-line Members of Congress who yell at Senate Pages: Learn to respect others, especially kids,” she added.

It’s not unusual for Senate pages to rest in the Rotunda, a midway point between the House and Senate. High school students, pages frequently work late into the night as they assist with day-to-day operations.

Schumer praised the pages’ work during his farewell address to the page class, saying they “can help make this place run smoothly, they’re here when we need them and they have served this institution with grace.”

Katherine Tully-McManus and Jordain Carney contributed to this report.

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