Washington, D.C., police were seen carrying away at least two members of a group that had gathered around one of the gates and placed them in zip ties. Some of the demonstrators had locked arms in front of the gate, appearing to try and block entry.
Reporters from the Washington Examiner were present and captured the scene on camera. Despite their efforts, fans were generally able to get into the venue, as law enforcement looked to have a firm grip on the situation.
Climate change protesters blocking the entrance of the Nationals Park before the Congressional Baseball Game. Groups planned to “shut down” the game weeks in advance. pic.twitter.com/wpgRW4E1Eg
— Cami Mondeaux (@cami_mondeaux) July 28, 2022
Demonstrations were advertised ahead of the charity game, including by a group of climate activists under the banner of “Now or Never,” which seeks to put pressure on Congress to pass climate legislation.
Some signs carried by activists outside the stadium bore messages such as “This is a climate emergency” and “Democrats: Seal the deal on climate!”
A Twitter account for Now or Never claimed that at least 150 demonstrators showed up, “peacefully calling on Congress to seal the deal on a clean energy bill and for President Biden to declare a climate emergency.”
BREAKING: 150 people are rallying at the Congressional baseball game, peacefully calling on Congress to seal the deal on a clean energy bill and for President Biden to declare a climate emergency. pic.twitter.com/JNyNs8YX0e
— Now Or Never (@now____or_never) July 28, 2022
Another activist group, ShutDownDC, pledged to “disrupt” the game. That group is the same one that offered cash bounties to anyone who saw any of the conservative Supreme Court justices and gave a location after the high court overturned Roe v. Wade. ShutDownDC’s Twitter account echoed calls for climate action.
Democrats and Republicans in Congress are set to face off in the annual game, which made a return last year after being canceled in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Republicans won 13-12 last year after three consecutive victories by the Democrats.
“Since 1909 the Congressional Baseball Game has been an annual bipartisan event beloved by all and enjoyed by thousands. Members of the United States Congress from each party solidify friendships off the floor and on the field,” the event’s website states. “Over the last century the Congressional Baseball Game’s popularity has contributed to its evolution into a foundation called Congressional Sports for Charity that supports worthy and effective Washington, DC area charities. These charities include The Washington Literacy Center, The Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Washington, and Washington Nationals Philanthropies along with the United States Capitol Police Memorial Fund in gratitude to the brave officers at the Republican practice shooting on June 14, 2017.”
The first pitch for the game in Washington was set for 7:05 p.m. and got underway. As of the third inning, Republicans led the Democrats 3-0.