After another week of wild and crazy news cycles, the 57th annual Congressional Baseball Game for Charity provided a much needed good news story. Sure, I would have liked the Republicans to have been victorious – I am a partisan – but the game was full of good feelings after the horrendous tragedy last year which included House Majority Whip Steve Scalise’s life hanging in the balance and others injured.
After a regular Republican team practice early one morning last June was interrupted by a mass shooting at the hands of a crazed Berniebro, Rep. Scalise was rushed to the hospital in really bad shape. Fortunately, because Scalise was there, Capitol Police officers were present. Otherwise, the outcome could have been even worse.
If police had not been at the scene “it would have been a massacre,” Paul said. “As terrible as it is, it could have been a lot worse.”
The members of Congress “practice 20 or 30 times” over a period of several weeks before the game, Paul said.
Paul said he heard perhaps 50 to 60 shots, which he said sounded like they were coming from an AR-15 or similar rifle.
Capitol Police officers were present because Scalise, a member of the congressional leadership, was there.
“We were really lucky that they were there,” he said.
So, it was particularly exciting when the very first hit went directly to Scalise. Rep. Jason Lewis (R-MN) described it as “divine intervention”. Scalise threw the ball to first base while on bended knee then steadied himself as he stood back up. How great was that?
Sweet moment as Rep. Steve Scalise is mobbed by his teammates after snagging a grounder on the first pitch of tonight's congressional baseball game.
— ABC News (@ABC) June 14, 2018
I love that video clip. It just makes me smile.
The Congressional Baseball Game is a bipartisan event played for charity. This year the United States Capitol Police Memorial Fund has been included because of last year’s tragedy.
Members of the United States Congress from each party solidify friendships off the floor and on the field. Over the last century the Congressional Baseball Game’s popularity has contributed to its evolution into a foundation called Congressional Sports for Charity that supports worthy and effective Washington, DC area charities. These charities include The Washington Literacy Center, The Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Washington, and the Washington Nationals Dream Foundation along with the United States Capitol Police Memorial Fund in gratitude to the brave officers at the Republican practice shooting on June 14, 2017.
This year the Democrats beat the Republicans 21-5. Ouch. Three women played in the game – two California Democrats and one Republican. Linda Sanchez (D-CA), Nanette Dias Barragan (D-CA) and Mia Love (R-ID) represented the ladies. The annual congressional women’s softball game played against members of the press corps is scheduled for June 20, 2018.