CSPAN is going forward with plans to broadcast tomorrow night’s Congressional Baseball Game For Charity, despite the events of this morning, which saw a gunman open fire on Republican congresspeople while they practiced for the game. Four people were shot in the attack, including Representative Steve Scalise, who’s listed as being in critical condition.
The Congressional Baseball Game is a Washington D.C. tradition, dating back more than a century to 1909. The game has raised millions for local charities over the years, and is generally seen as the rare social event where elected officials on either side of the increasingly yawning political divide can come together with something vaguely resembling unity.
The teams’ managers, Democrat Rep. Mike Doyle, and Texan GOP Rep. Joe Barton, gave a joint press conference today, blessedly devoid of the partisan finger-pointing that’s already started creeping up on the political fringes (and Newt Gingrich’s Fox News quotes, in case there’s a notable difference between the two). “It shouldn’t take an incident like this to bring us together,” said Doyle, who was greeted with cheers from the House floor when he announced that the game would go on as scheduled. “Joe and I have been reflecting a lot lately on how we can still maintain our principles and our legislative agendas, but we could do it in a more civil way.”
And while that sounds frankly (and depressingly) unlikely, given the increasingly fractious relationships between the political parties in America at the moment, it’s a relief to know that at least one moment of admittedly symbolic good faith will manage to hold on for at least another year.