Let there be no doubt Barack Obama wants Congress to approve his trade deals.
The president took his charm offensive to Nationals Park on Thursday night to hobnob with lawmakers at the annual Congressional Baseball Game.
No, he didn't stop the game to make a speech, but the president visited with House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (who has been silent on what her final vote will be), Democratic team manager Rep. Dan Kildee of Michigan, and Rep. Jim Clyburn of South Carolina.
On the Republican side, Obama visited with the GOP manager, former Energy and Commerce Chairman Joe Barton of Texas, as well as Rep. Kevin Yoder of Kansas, according to the White House press-pool report.
Democratic fans cheered, "Four More Years," while the GOP side led, "T-P-A," chants.
While the annual baseball game is treated seriously by both sides, Friday's votes carry much higher stakes for both Congress and the president's agenda, and the White House has been pulling out all the stops in order to get enough Democrats to side with Republicans to approve the trade package. Friday, the House will take up Trade Adjustment Assistance, a program to help workers hurt by the impact of trade. Should that pass, the House will vote on the larger Trade Promotion Authority bill.
The pooler noted that Obama left the game after watching Sen. Rand Paul strike out.
But before Obama left the stadium, he took what might end up being one of the most viral pictures of his presidency—a shot with the Washington Nationals' five racing presidents: George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Abe Lincoln, William Howard Taft, and, of course, fan favorite Teddy Roosevelt.