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Congressional baseball game goes back more than a century, will go on Thursday

This year, the event raised more than $600,000 for charity. (Source: Congressional Baseball Game) This year, the event raised more than $600,000 for charity. (Source: Congressional Baseball Game)
Rep. Mike Doyle, D-PA, and Rep. Joe Barton, R-TX, announce the baseball game will be played on Thursday. (Source: CNN) Rep. Mike Doyle, D-PA, and Rep. Joe Barton, R-TX, announce the baseball game will be played on Thursday. (Source: CNN)

(RNN) – Managers for the Congressional baseball teams announced the charity baseball game will go on as scheduled at 7:05 p.m. ET Thursday evening at National's Field. 

The status of the game was up in the air after a gunman shot at Republican lawmakers and staff who were practicing for a charity baseball game scheduled for Thursday evening at National’s Field. 

The Congressional Baseball Game is a tradition that began more than 100 years ago. According to the event’s website, Senate and House members from each party play against each other and raise money for a Washington, DC, area charity.

"[Rep.] Joe [Barton, R-TX] and I talked and we decided that we're not going to let incidents like this change our way of life or our daily routines. We're going to go ahead and play the ball game, players on both sides want to do that, they think it's the right thing to do," Rep. Mike Doyle, D- PA, said during a news conference.

With his voice quivering, earlier Barton gave a heartfelt statement at Capitol Hill while wearing his uniform that the game should go on.

House Whip Steve Scalise, R-LA, who was shot in the hip, and lobbyist Matt Mika, who was shot in the chest, are in critical condition. Another staffer, Zach Barth, also was shot but is not critical. Two Capitol Police officers were also injured - Krystal Griner and David Bailey.

The other Republican coach is Rep. Roger Williams of Texas. Rep. Mike Doyle (D-PA) is the Democratic manager. The Republicans won last year, stopping a seven-game winning streak by the Democrats.

This year, the event raised more than $600,000, the most money in its history. The money will benefit the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Washington, The Washington Literacy Center, and the Washington Nationals Dream Foundation. After the shooting, the event added another charity - The Fallen Officers Fund.

About 10,000 fans attend the game each year and pass through security, according to the Washington post.

Former baseball player Rep. John Tener, of Pennsylvania, first organized the game in 1909. Democrats won the game 26-16, and won the next six games.

Weather, news events, the Great Depression and World War II have canceled the game, and sometimes the game was held every other year.

The game was discontinued by Speaker Sam Rayburn of Texas in 1958 because the game had become “too physical.”

In 1962, Speaker John McCormack of Massachusetts revived the game. Currently, the series is tied between the parties at 39-39-1. 

C-Span will broadcast the game.

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