Updated Apr 2, 2021 - Sports

MLB to move All-Star Game out of Atlanta over Georgia voting restrictions

 general view of the Major League Baseball logo
General view of the Major League Baseball logo. Photo: Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

MLB Commissioner Robert Manfred announced Friday that the 2021 All-Star Game will be moved out of Atlanta due to Georgia's law curbing voting access, which will disproportionately affect people of color.

What they're saying: "Major League Baseball fundamentally supports voting rights for all Americans and opposes restrictions to the ballot box," Manfred said in a statement.

  • Manfred said the decision was made after "thoughtful conversations with Clubs, former and current players, the Players Association, and The Players Alliance, among others, to listen to their views."
  • He added that a new host city and details about the All-Star Game will be announced "shortly."

Atlanta's MLB team issued a statement in response to the league's move on Friday, saying: The "Braves are deeply disappointed by the decision of Major League Baseball to move its' 2021 All Star Game."

  • "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 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."

Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp (R) tweeted later Friday, "Today, @MLB caved to fear, political opportunism, and liberal lies."

The big picture: President Biden told ESPN in an interview broadcast Wednesday he would back MLB moving its 2021 All-Star Game out of Atlanta due to Georgia's voting law — which he called "Jim Crow on steroids."

  • The All-Star Game was scheduled for July 13 at Truist Park. It would have been the third time Atlanta hosted the game, per ESPN.

Flashback: The NFL moved the Super Bowl out of Arizona in the early 1990s because the state did not make Martin Luther King Jr. Day an official holiday, per AP.

  • The NBA moved its 2017 All-Star Game out of Charlotte because North Carolina passed a law that limited anti-discrimination protections for LGBTQ people.

Editor's note: This story has been updated throughout.

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