MLB Pulls All-Star Game From Georgia to Protest Voting Law

Author : ptejengko
Publish Date : 2021-04-03 04:38:53
MLB Pulls All-Star Game From Georgia to Protest Voting Law

‘Major League Baseball fundamentally supports voting rights for all Americans and opposes restrictions to the ballot box,’ the commissioner said.

ELECTION LAWS HAVE consequences.

Major League Baseball announced Friday the organization would pull its All-Star Game out of Atlanta in protest of a draconian new voter law that – among other things – makes it illegal to offer snacks and water to someone standing in line hours to vote.

[ READ: Pressure Mounts on Georgia to Undo Voting Law ]
"Over the last week, we have engaged in thoughtful conversations with Clubs, former and current players, the Players Association, and The Players Alliance, among others, to listen to their views. I have decided that the best way to demonstrate our values as a sport is by relocating this year's All-Star Game and MLB Draft," Commissioner of Baseball Robert D. Manfred Jr. said in a statement.

"Major League Baseball fundamentally supports voting rights for all Americans and opposes restrictions to the ballot box," Manfred said, noting that the professional sports league last year became the first to join the non-partisan Civic Alliance, a coalition of businesses that back elections and democracy. "Fair access to voting continues to have our game's unwavering support," Manfred said.

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The decision comes less than two days after President Joe Biden, in an interview with ESPN, said he would "strongly support" MLB moving its game – and the ensuing revenues to the state – out of Atlanta.

"The very people who are victimized the most are the people who are the leaders in these various sports," Biden said on the eve of opening day. "And it's just not right."

Manfred said in his statement the league would continue with plans to honor the memory of baseball great Henry Aaron as part of All-Star Game festivities, as well as support Atlanta-area communities through the All-Star Legacy Projects. A new site for the mid-season game featuring the best players in the league has not yet been determined, he said.

Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp, a Republican who signed the law, blasted MLB's decision as a "knee-jerk" reaction, and proof that "cancel culture and woke political activists are coming for every aspect of your life, sports included."

[ READ: The National Consequences of Georgia’s New Election Law ]
Georgia passed a law recently that makes it much harder for people to vote in the Peach State, restricting absentee balloting, imposing voter ID laws and making mobile voting effectively illegal. The state secretary of state – who last year pushed back against fellow Republicans' false claims of voter fraud and insistence that former President Donald Trump won the state's 16 Electoral College votes – has been removed from the State Election Board. Further, the GOP-controlled state legislature would have more control over the elections board.

Since the speedy passage and signing of the law,, there has been criticism from corporations and voting rights activists, along with calls to boycott Georgia-headquartered companies that did not do enough to stop the law. CEOs of Coca-Cola and Delta have put out statements opposing the law, but did so after it passed.

MLB is the first major entity to make the business consequences of the law in Georgia very real for the state's economy. A simialr effort by major corporations in 2017 forced North Carolina to rescind a so-called "bathroom bill" regarded as anti-transgender.

Susan Milligan, Senior Politics Writer

Susan Milligan is senior political writer at U.S. News & World Report. She has covered ...  READ MORE

Tags: baseball, MLB, elections, Georgia, race, racism, The Racial Divide

‘Major League Baseball fundamentally supports voting rights for all Americans and opposes restrictions to the ballot box,’ the commissioner said.

ELECTION LAWS HAVE consequences.

Major League Baseball announced Friday the organization would pull its All-Star Game out of Atlanta in protest of a draconian new voter law that – among other things – makes it illegal to offer snacks and water to someone standing in line hours to vote.

[ READ: Pressure Mounts on Georgia to Undo Voting Law ]
"Over the last week, we have engaged in thoughtful conversations with Clubs, former and current players, the Players Association, and The Players Alliance, among others, to listen to their views. I have decided that the best way to demonstrate our values as a sport is by relocating this year's All-Star Game and MLB Draft," Commissioner of Baseball Robert D. Manfred Jr. said in a statement.

"Major League Baseball fundamentally supports voting rights for all Americans and opposes restrictions to the ballot box," Manfred said, noting that the professional sports league last year became the first to join the non-partisan Civic Alliance, a coalition of businesses that back elections and democracy. "Fair access to voting continues to have our game's unwavering support," Manfred said.

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The decision comes less than two days after President Joe Biden, in an interview with ESPN, said he would "strongly support" MLB moving its game – and the ensuing revenues to the state – out of Atlanta.

"The very people who are victimized the most are the people who are the leaders in these various sports," Biden said on the eve of opening day. "And it's just not right."

Manfred said in his statement the league would continue with plans to honor the memory of baseball great Henry Aaron as part of All-Star Game festivities, as well as support Atlanta-area communities through the All-Star Legacy Projects. A new site for the mid-season game featuring the best players in the league has not yet been determined, he said.

Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp, a Republican who signed the law, blasted MLB's decision as a "knee-jerk" reaction, and proof that "cancel culture and woke political activists are coming for every aspect of your life, sports included."

[ READ: The National Consequences of Georgia’s New Election Law ]
Georgia passed a law recently that makes it much harder for people to vote in the Peach State, restricting absentee balloting, imposing voter ID laws and making mobile voting effectively illegal. The state secretary of state – who last year pushed back against fellow Republicans' false claims of voter fraud and insistence that former President Donald Trump won the state's 16 Electoral College votes – has been removed from the State Election Board. Further, the GOP-controlled state legislature would have more control over the elections board.

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Since the speedy passage and signing of the law,, there has been criticism from corporations and voting rights activists, along with calls to boycott Georgia-headquartered companies that did not do enough to stop the law. CEOs of Coca-Cola and Delta have put out statements opposing the law, but did so after it passed.

MLB is the first major entity to make the business consequences of the law in Georgia very real for the state's economy. A simialr effort by major corporations in 2017 forced North Carolina to rescind a so-called "bathroom bill" regarded as anti-transgender.

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Susan Milligan, Senior Politics Writer

Susan Milligan is senior political writer at U.S. News & World Report. She has covered ...  READ MORE

Tags: baseball, MLB, elections, Georgia, race, racism, The Racial Divide



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