Congressional baseball practice turned alarming and then grim on Wednesday after a gunman opened fire on Republicans, wounding House Majority Whip Steve Scalise and at least four others. In the process they raise more than a half-million dollars for charities including the Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Washington and the Washington Nationals' Dream Foundation.
Congressional officials said the charity game will proceed as scheduled at 7:05 p.m. ET.
The annual Congressional baseball game, a Washington tradition dating back more than a century, gives United States lawmakers the chance to take their sometimes bitter partisan rivalry to a friendlier field of battle. A Republican, Largent represented the state's 1st Congressional District from 1994-2002.
U.S. Rep. Tim Murphy, an Upper St. Clair Republican, says he was with the Speaker when the news broke.
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Over the years, players have played so hard that they've destroyed their bodies in the process.
Thankfully, the game will go on-tainted, though, like too much else, by the bile of our modern political life.
Lawmakers who spoke at the scene to reporters described a normal morning practice, at a field where they've practiced for years, when all of a sudden shots rang out. The bullet shattered one of his hips and tore through internal organs, leaving the Congressman in shock and requiring several liters of blood and three surgeries-two on Wednesday and one early Thursday morning.
"50 (shots) would be an understatement, I'm quite sure", Flake said when asked about the total amount of gunfire, including police returning fire.
Rep. Joe Barton, the Republicans' baseball team manager, witnessed the shooting with his 10-year-old son. "By the time he got into Congress, he was just throwing watermelons, and I was hitting the hell out of 'em". Bernie SandersBernie SandersRoger Stone blames shooting on "climate of hate" toward Trump Facebook pulls pages of suspected baseball gunman FBI: Suspected shooter had been in Alexandria since March MORE's (I-Vt.) 2016 presidential campaign and a frequent critic of President Trump on social media.
America is at its greatest when Republicans and Democrats are working together to move our nation forward, because at the end of the day we all pledge allegiance to the same flag and sing the same national anthem before every baseball game. I won't say that party doesn't matter, because party is how we define our beliefs and work towards shared goal. "Who would want to kill people trying to do something good?"