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MLB moves 2021 All-Star Game out of Georgia over new voting law

MLB moves 2021 All-Star Game out of Georgia over new voting law, as commissioner Rob Manfred says the league ‘opposes restrictions at the ballot box’ and will look to quickly finalize an alternate venue

  • Major League Baseball has decided to move the 2021 All-Star Game away from Truist Park outside Atlanta because of Georgia’s controversial new law
  • The game was set for July 13 at Truist Park, the Braves’ 41,000-seat stadium in suburban Cobb County. MLB is now scrambling to finalize a new venue  
  • Georgia’s new voting law – which critics say limits access to the ballot box, especially for people of color – has been criticized by many, including Joe Biden
  • Supporters say the law ensures election integrity and stamps out potential fraud
  • Commissioner Rob Manfred said the league has been discussing the event with clubs, union leaders, as well as current and former Major League players 
  • MLB’s draft, which was slated to be held in Atlanta, is also being relocated  
  • In a statement, Manfred said: ‘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’ 
  • Several Georgia companies spoke out against the law, including Coca-Cola 

Amid growing pressure from voting rights advocates as well as current and former players, Major League Baseball has decided to move the 2021 All-Star Game away from Truist Park outside Atlanta because of Georgia’s controversial new law.

MLB’s draft, which was slated to be held in Atlanta, is also being relocated. 

‘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,’ read a statement by MLB commissioner Rob Manfred. ‘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.’

Georgia’s new voting law – which critics say unfairly limits access to the ballot box, especially for people of color – had prompted calls from as high as the White House to consider moving the midsummer classic out of Atlanta. 

MLB had awarded the game to Atlanta on May 29, 2019. It was scheduled for July 13 as part of baseball’s midsummer break that includes the Futures Game on July 11 and Home Run Derby the following night.

Amid growing pressure from voting rights advocates as well as current and former players, Major League Baseball has decided to move the 2021 All-Star Game away from Truist Park outside Atlanta because of Georgia's controversial new 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,' read a statement by MLB commissioner Rob Manfred. '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'

Amid growing pressure from voting rights advocates as well as current and former players, Major League Baseball has decided to move the 2021 All-Star Game away from Truist Park outside Atlanta because of Georgia’s controversial new 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,’ read a statement by MLB commissioner Rob Manfred. ‘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’

The game was set for July 13 at Truist Park, the Braves' 41,000-seat stadium in suburban Cobb County. It would have been the third time Atlanta served as host, having previously held the event in 1972 and 2000. Several companies, such as Delta Airlines, have criticized the law

The game was set for July 13 at Truist Park, the Braves' 41,000-seat stadium in suburban Cobb County. It would have been the third time Atlanta served as host, having previously held the event in 1972 and 2000. Several companies, such as Delta Airlines, have criticized the law

The game was set for July 13 at Truist Park, the Braves’ 41,000-seat stadium in suburban Cobb County. It would have been the third time Atlanta served as host, having previously held the event in 1972 and 2000. Several companies, such as Delta Airlines, have criticized the law 

In the face of repeated assertions by former President Trump that Georgia’s election was fraudulent, the Republican-controlled legislature approved a sweeping new law that would, among other things, place new ID requirements on absentee voting by mail and prohibit handing out food and water to voters standing in line.

Supporters of the law have said it merely ensures election integrity and stamps out potential fraud. Others have said the motives are more sinister after an election that registered nearly 5 million votes with no credible evidence of serious wrongdoing.     

‘Major League Baseball fundamentally supports voting rights for all Americans and opposes restrictions to the ballot box,’ Manfred’s statement continued. ‘In 2020, MLB became the first professional sports league to join the non-partisan Civic Alliance to help build a future in which everyone participates in shaping the United States. 

‘We proudly used our platform to encourage baseball fans and communities throughout our country to perform their civic duty and actively participate in the voting process. Fair access to voting continues to have our game’s unwavering support.’

Manfred went on to invoke the memory of Braves legend Hank Aaron, the African-American slugger who famously endured intense racial abuse and violent threats to overtake Babe Ruth for baseball’s all-time home run record.  

‘We will continue with our plans to celebrate the memory of Hank Aaron during this season’s All-Star festivities,’ Manfred continued. ‘In addition, MLB’s planned investments to support local communities in Atlanta as part of our All-Star Legacy Projects will move forward. We are finalizing a new host city and details about these events will be announced shortly.’


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bourbiza

Bourbiza Mohamed. Writer and Political Discourse Analysis.

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