MLB Moves All Star Game Out of Georgia Following Voting Law Passage

Robert Manfred
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"Major League Baseball fundamentally supports voting rights for all Americans, and opposes restrictions to the ballot box," MLB commissioner Rob Manfred said in a statement.

Major League Baseball will move the 2021 All Star Game and MLB Draft out of Atlanta after the state of Georgia passed a law that sets restrictions on voting that President Biden called "Jim Crow in the 21st Century."

"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," MLB commissioner Rob Manfred said in a statement. "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."

"Major League Baseball fundamentally supports voting rights for all Americans, and opposes restrictions to the ballot box," Manfred added, noting that "MLB's planned investments to support local communities in Atlanta as part of our All Star Legacy Projects will move forward."

The game, which will air on the Fox broadcast network, had been slated to be held July 13th at Truist Park, the home of the Atlanta Braves. Wherever the league moves the game, Manfred says it will "continue with our plans to celebrate the memory of Hank Aaron."

The move by Major League Baseball is the first major action taken by a large company or organization in the wake of the voting law being passed.

While a number of companies, organizations and individuals have expressed concern or disapproval with the law, and some have called for a boycott (including director James Mangold and actor Mark Hamill), others including Stacey Abrams pushed back on boycotts, arguing that they would hurt the groups already being impacted by the new law.

On Twitter Friday following the MLB announcement, Abrams said she was "disappointed" in the decision.

"Disappointed @MLB will move the All-Star Game, but proud of their stance on voting rights. GA GOP traded economic opportunity for suppression. On behalf of PoC targeted by #SB202 to lose votes + now wages, I urge events & productions to come & speak out or stay & fight."

Georgia Governor Brian Kemp said in a statement following the decision that MLB "caved to fear, political opportunism, and liberal lies. Georgians - and all Americans - should fully understand what MLB's knee-jerk decision means: Cancel culture and woke political activists are coming for every aspect of your life, sports included. if the left doesn't agree with you, facts and truth don't matter."

He added that he spoke to the leadership of the Braves organization, who said they didn't agree with the decision.