• February 8, 2023

Major League Baseball Joins Wave Of Backlash Against Georgia Voting Restrictions : NPR

Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred, pictured in January, said Friday the organization was steadfast in its support for “fair access to voting.” Kevin D. Liles / AP Hide caption

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Kevin D. Liles / AP

Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred, pictured in January, said Friday the organization was steadfast in its support for “fair access to voting.”

Kevin D. Liles / AP

This summer’s Major League Baseball Draft and All-Star Game will not take place in Atlanta, MLB officials said on Friday.

The withdrawal of the two events from the city in July is in response to Georgia’s recent electoral restrictions, which critics, including President Biden, have called “Jim Crow in the 21st century” for saying the legislation disproportionately affects the color communities will affect.

“I’ve decided that the best way to demonstrate our values ​​as a sport is to move this year’s All-Star Games and MLB design,” League Commissioner Rob Manfred said in a statement. “Major League Baseball fundamentally supports the voting rights of all Americans and opposes ballot box restrictions.”

“Fair access to voting continues to be steadfastly supported by our game,” said Manfred.

The Republican-led election overhaul was signed by Governor Brian Kemp in March and is just around the corner devastating backlash from prominent companies and business people.

While Supporters extol aspects of the law Critics extending face-to-face voting have denounced dramatic changes to postal voting rules that add new identification requirements and allow the Georgian state electoral committee, currently dominated by Republicans, to temporarily take over local electoral offices.

Another provision that has outraged advocates of voting rights is that the bill makes it an offense to distribute food and drink to people waiting in line to vote. Last year people waited in line for hours to cast their ballots.

The overhaul follows a record turnout last year, in which 1.3 million postal votes were cast. The influx overwhelmed local election officials as some Georgia counties, particularly Fulton County, stood in the national spotlight for days as the country watched tightly-fought presidential and Senate competitions.

Manfred signaled earlier this week that a change in the All-Star game is likely.

The organization says it is finalizing a new host city for the game on July 13th and “details of these events will be announced shortly.”

The Atlanta Braves said they were “deeply disappointed“by the result.

“This was neither our decision nor our recommendation and we are sad that fans cannot see this event in our city,” the team said in a statement.

“The Braves organization will continue to emphasize the importance of equal choice, and we were hoping our city could use this event as a platform to improve the discussion. Our city has always been known as a unit in separate times and we will have the opportunity miss.” Address issues that are important to our community.

“Unfortunately, companies, employees and fans in Georgia are the victims of this decision.”

The Players Alliance, comprised of “150 professional black baseball players who have come together to use our voice and platform to create change and equality,” supports the MLB’s decision.

“We want to voice our voice loud and clear in our opposition to the recent Georgian legislation, which not only disproportionately disenfranchises the black community, but also paves the way for other states to pass similarly harmful laws, largely based on widespread lies and Disinformation. ” the group said in a Explanation.

The governor who used to be this week told CNBC He’s “happy” to deal with corporate setbacks and voiced his dissatisfaction with the MLB on Friday.

“Today Major League Baseball gave in to fear, political opportunism and liberal lies,” he said in a statement.

He added, “Georgians – and all Americans – should fully understand what the MLB’s decision means: breaking culture and awakening political activists who come for every aspect of your life, including sports. When the left disagrees with you, facts and figures the truth don’t matter. “

Despite plans to move the events from Georgia to another city, Manfred said Friday, “MLB’s planned investments to support local communities in Atlanta as part of our All-Star Legacy Projects will continue.”

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