Congress to play charity baseball game as scheduled despite shootings at Republican practice field

The Congressional Baseball Game, an annual charity event held at Nationals Park, will be played as scheduled after a gunman opened fire Wednesday on Republican lawmakers practicing for the game.

Louisiana Rep. Steve Scalise, the House majority whip, was among several injured by the gunfire at a baseball field in Alexandria, Virginia, on Wednesday morning. Scalise was shot in the hip and underwent surgery, according to a statement released by his office. He is listed in stable condition.

Rep. Martha McSally told reporters that Speaker Paul Ryan announced during a House briefing that the game will still be held Thursday at Nationals Park — the home of the Washington Nationals. Ryan’s announcement was met with a standing ovation, according to McSally.

McSally, a Republican from Arizona, said “we can’t let anyone stop us from doing our work and from standing together.”

Thursday’s contest will mark the 80th edition of the Congressional Baseball Game, which pits Republicans against Democrats. Proceeds from the game are contributed to multiple Washington, D.C. charities, including the local Boys and Girls Club and the Washington Literacy Center.

As the No. 3 House Republican, Scalise has a security detail assigned to him at all times. Lawmakers who were at the practice said the shooting could have been much worse if the security detail was not there.

The shooter has been identified as 66-year-old James T. Hodgkinson of Belleville, Illinois. President Donald Trump said Hodgkinson has died from his injuries.

Texas Rep. Roger Williams, who is one of the coaches, said the Republican baseball team holds its practice every morning at 6:30 a.m. ET at Eugene Simpson Stadium Park in Alexandria.

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