Baseball fan Pelosi urges “Team U.S.A.” unity among new House members
Nancy Pelosi quoted a member of her favorite baseball team, the World Champion San Francisco Giants, in a pep talk on Thursday to newly elected members of the House of Representatives.
The House Democratic leader told incoming lawmakers of both parties about pitcher Ryan Vogelsong and his words of wisdom that bridge hard-ball sports and hard-ball politics.
She quoted Vogelsong as saying: “The reason that we win is that we play as a team, and each member cares more about the name on the front of the uniform (Giants) than the (player’s) name on the back of the uniform.”
Speaking at a news conference afterward, Pelosi said, “What I said to those (House) freshmen, Democrats and Republicans, this morning is that we are all – on the front of our uniforms – Team U.S.A.”
“And we have to work together for our country to continue to be No. 1, to prevail, and hopefully they will find a way to that,” Pelosi said.
Vogelsong made his comments at a recent victory party in San Francisco that drew more than one million people and celebrated the Giants’ four-game sweep of the Detroit Tigers in the World Series.
Pelosi helped welcome the freshman House class to Washington a week after the 2012 congressional and presidential elections that showed a deeply divided electorate.
She told new members that Washington hasn’t always been as partisan as it has been during the past two years. Gridlock and constant political fighting resulted in Congress receiving its lowest approval ratings ever while passing the fewest bills into law in more than a half century.
When the new 435-member House convenes in January, there will be 79 freshmen, 44 Democrats and 35 Republicans.
Pelosi, a San Francisco Democrat, said, “Hopefully with this election and with their fresh start as the freshman class, in a bipartisan way, they can find agreement.”
Photo: House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) speaks during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington on November 14, 2012. REUTERS/Mary F. Calvert