WASHINGTON, DC – lawmakers turned to a time-honored baseball tradition Thursday night in a bid to bridge a growing partisan divide, and in the Wake of Wednesday in the shooting death of majority whip Steve Scalise-but whether this show of solidarity makes it to the Nationals Park diamond Capitol Hill, it remains to be seen.
Just hours after gunman James Hodgkinson opened fire on a peaceful neighborhood baseball field in Alexandria, Va., where Republican lawmakers, aides and lobbyists have been practicing for the Thursday match-up against Democrats, the partisan rhetoric of his ugly face.
Democrats called for stricter gun-control-reform, while the Republicans beat back calls for an attack on their 2. Amendment Rights.
But outside the stadium, in Washington, DC, there is a strong cross-party support was to show how family, friends and fans rallied around the Capitol Hill ballplayers.
Lori Saunders and her family drove more than seven hours from Charlotte, N. C., the nation’s capital for the game.
“We wouldn’t miss it,” she told Fox News.
Police presence was picked up planned outside of the stadium about three hours before the first pitch will be thrown at 7:05 PM.
Last year, the game reportedly $raised $ 500,000 for charity.
Organizers told Fox News that the number is expected to more than $1 million this year. The money raised from the Thursday game goes to four charities: The Boys and Girls Club of Greater Washington, The Capitol police Fund, The Washington Nationals dream Foundation and The Washington Literacy Center.
Roll Call, a longtime sponsor of the annual cross-party game, said the tickets were sold out has been sold at a rate of 500 per hour, and by Thursday afternoon, more than 20,000 tickets.
Since 1909, the annual Convention baseball game showdown of members of Congress, their aides and lobbyists has become a popular annual partisan. Players usually sport the uniform of their home States and districts, although Thursday, they moved to Louisiana State University uniforms as a tribute to Scalise, who remains in a critical condition after being shot in the hip.
Democrats wore white, while the Republicans were in the black under their jerseys.
The legislature pushed house leaders on Wednesday to go to the game forward, and said, the competition between the teams will continue.
“We will not allow incidents like this to change our way of life or our routines,” democratic coach Rep., Mike Doyle at a press conference on Wednesday.
“I said [to the Republican coach Rep. Joe Barton] that I love him before the game, I love him after the game but during the game, we play to win and I know that Joe ‘ s team to do the same, and charities benefit.”
President Trump does not participate in the Thursday game, although he Video a message. He and his wife Melania attended Scalise at the MedStar Washington Hospital Center. They also visited with the Capitol Police Officer Crystal Griner, who was also Wednesday’s attack wounded.