Lobbyists Ice Members in Hockey Fundraiser

Posted March 10, 2010 at 6:23pm

Score one (well, seven) for K Street.

While the war between Congress and lobbyists isn’t likely to end anytime soon, K Street denizens won a battle on the ice Tuesday night, handily defeating Members and Congressional staffers 7-2 in the second annual Congressional Hockey Challenge, held at the Fort Dupont Ice Arena.

The Lobbyists made it a long night for the Lawmakers, scoring all seven goals before the Members’ squad made its first shot. Left wing Nelson Litterst of the C2 Group — nicknamed “Half Nelson” — scored back-to-back goals in the first period to put his team up 2-0. Forward Ian Bennitt of Ball Janik LLP quickly followed with another to put the team up 3-0 at the first break.

The slaughter continued for most of the game, with the Lobbyists going up 6-0 by the end of the second period and scoring a seventh early in the third. Right wing John Goodwin of the National Rifle Association scored a goal and had two assists, and defender Jeff Kimbell of Jeffrey J. Kimbell & Associates Inc. made what was perhaps the play of the game when he scored a goal over the right shoulder of the Lawmakers’ goalie, Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-N.Y.), late in the second period.

The Lawmakers did manage two goals toward the end of the heated matchup, but it was too little, too late.

“Things may not have gone our way, but as a long-suffering Chicago Cubs fan, I can say with some practice that there’s always next year,” said Rep. Mike Quigley (D-Ill.), who played right wing for the Lawmakers. “I was also reminded that in D.C. you can’t even hide your true colors on the ice: The NRA’s lobbyist was playing right wing.”

While the action on the ice was at times violent, plenty of goodwill came out of the event.

Quigley and his teammates, Reps. Brian Higgins (D-N.Y.) and Lee Terry (R-Neb.), officially launched the Congressional Hockey Caucus on Tuesday night, promising to find ways to promote the sport among youths. In addition, the game raised more than $52,000 for the Fort Dupont Ice Hockey Club, which provides inner-city youths with the opportunity to play in an organized ice hockey program.

It still might not be enough, however. According to an event spokesman, Neal Henderson, the founder and head coach of the club, plans to donate the $3,600 in proceeds from the door donations, silent auction and sales of cups and T-shirts to the arena, which is facing a funding shortfall of more than $200,000.