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Batter Up: Press Best Congresswomen In Annual Softball Game

Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz gets a kiss on the cheek from Speaker of the House John Boehner before the start of the game.(Chet Susslin)

June 20, 2012
cdn-media.nationaljournal.com.jpgCongresswomen don't play. Well, they do, sort of.

Female Capitol Hill reporters and congresswomen faced off during the fourth annual Congressional Women's Softball Game Wednesday night, and the game ended with the press winning 13-10 despite quite a stunning comeback from the members late in the game.

The press team led for the majority of the game, while the members had only one run until the sixth inning when, with based loaded, Rep. Jo Ann Emerson, R-Mo., got an RBI, setting off a rally.

There were other highlights, like when Rep. Grace Napolitano, D-Calif., struck out two press players in one inning. "Well, they weren't hitting very well," she said later.

In the end, it wasn't enough to defeat the members of the press corps, whom announcer Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., was eager to point out had an age advantage.

Despite the scorching heat, a number of other members showed up for the game, including House Speaker John Boehner, who was there from the from start, to House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, who showed up during the later innings. Others in attendance included: House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., and Rep. Dennis Kucinich, D-Ohio, who rooted from the press side for his daughter Jackie Kucinich of USA Today.

The game benefited the Young Survivors Coalition, which helps young women diagnosed with breast cancer.

"These women are all so committed. Both teams, we all know someone who has either died from breast cancer or had it," said Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, D-Fla., who was diagnosed with breast cancer at 41. She's one of the founders of the annual tradition, along with Emerson and Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y.

Wasserman Schultz also said Congress could take some cues from the bipartisan spirit on the field. High-fives were given away indiscriminately, no matter which team they played for in the Capitol.

Check out our photo gallery, capturing more of the action.

*This story has been updated. The original version noted Klobuchar yelled "Roe v. way to go!" as she was announcing. Klobuchar's press secretary Brigit Helgen later clarified she was cheering on fellow lawmaker Sen. Martha Roby, R-Ala., yelling "Martha Roby, way to go!"

(Photo: Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand pitches the first inning against the press corps. National Journal/Chet Susslin)

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