Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
February 11, 2016

New Members Subject of Intense Softball Recruiting

Months before this year’s annual Congressional Women’s Softball Game, members of Congress have begun feting recruits for their annual matchup against female Capitol Hill reporters.

HOH stumbled on a recent happy-hour gathering of female jock-lawmakers at Tortilla Coast. And when we say “stumbled on,” we mean that we knew about it ahead of time and showed up uninvited wearing our own Bad News Babes jersey. Members, on the whole, were gracious about the intrusion.

“We’ve got a whole bunch of secret weapons on the Republican side this year,” Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz of Florida told HOH. “So as the chair of the [Democratic National Committee], I’ve done a little scouting and recruiting.”

On June 26, the two teams will face off in their Young Survival Coalition breast cancer charity game.

“We have a lot of new, young, hard-core athletes who are really excited about playing,” Wasserman Schultz said.

HOH seized the opportunity to glean a bit more on their freshman recruits.

Among those confirmed recruits were a calm and confident Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, D-Hawaii; Rep. Cheri Bustos, D-Ill., who seemed surprised that HOH was aware that she is a 1994 Illinois College Sports Hall of Fame inductee; and Sen. Heidi Heitkamp, D-N.D., who Tribune’s Mike Memoli has noted was trash talking on Twitter while simultaneously presiding over the Senate on March 6.

Still on the fence are Rep. Susan W. Brooks, R-Ind., who has said she is enchanted by the team’s camaraderie, and Chicago Democrat Robin Kelly, who is heavily favored to win a special election to fill a congressional seat later this year. “She asked us about softball and told us that she’d played,” Wasserman Schultz said of Kelly.

Republican or Democrat, all make Wasserman Schultz very happy.

“While I may not be involved in their campaigns to help them be successful, once they’re here, we’re all about making sure they’re a part of the team.”

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