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MLB Moving All-Star Game Due to Georgia Voting Laws

Brock Fritz

Major League Baseball is in search of a new site for its 2021 All-Star Game.

The league had intended to play the game in Atlanta, but announced Friday that the game will be moved out of Georgia due to the state’s new voting laws. The Associated Press reported that MLB commissioner Rob Manfred made the decision after discussions with players and the Players Alliance.

“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,” Manfred said of moving the game that was scheduled to be played July 13 at Truist Park, home of the Atlanta Braves. “Major League Baseball fundamentally supports voting rights for all Americans and opposes restrictions to the ballot box.”

According to the AP, Georgia governor Brian Kemp signed the 98-page measure into law last Thursday. Among the changes made to Georgia’s election process is that photo identification will be required to vote absentee by mail. The law’s supporters say the changes are needed to restore confidence in Georgia’s elections, while the opponents say the law will restrict voting access, especially for people of color.

Kemp reportedly said that the MLB moving the All-Star Game is a “knee-jerk decision” that means “cancel culture and woke political activists are coming for every aspect of your life, sports included.”

Former president Donald Trump agreed and urged his supporters to boycott baseball, while president Joe Biden supports the MLB moving the game out of Georgia.

“The president has made his concerns about the bill passed in Georgia clear, given its extreme provisions that impact the ability of so many citizens to cast their votes,” the White House said in a statement. “He said earlier this week that if the decision was made by Major League Baseball to move the All-Star Game, he would certainly support that decision — and now that MLB has made that choice, he certainly does.”

The Braves released a statement saying they’re deeply disappointed by the decision to move the game from Truist Park.

“This was neither our decision, nor our recommendation and we are saddened that fans will not be able to see this event in our city,” the statement reads. “The Braves organization will continue to stress the importance of equal voting opportunities and we had hoped our city could use this event as a platform to enhance the discussion. Our city has always been known as a united in divided times and we will miss the opportunity to address issues that are important to our community.”

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