Ga. lawmakers issue statements on MLB’s 2021 All-Star Game change

FILE - Cardboard cutouts of fans in the otherwise empty seats face the field during the sixth...
FILE - Cardboard cutouts of fans in the otherwise empty seats face the field during the sixth inning of a baseball game between the Atlanta Braves and Tampa Bay Rays in Atlanta, in this Thursday, July 30, 2020, file photo. Georgia’s new voting law _ which critics claim severely limits access to the ballot box, especially for people of color _ has prompted calls from as high as the White House to consider moving the midsummer classic out of Atlanta. The game is set for July 13 at Truist Park, the Braves’ 41,000-seat stadium in suburban Cobb County.(AP Photo/John Amis, File)
Published: Apr. 2, 2021 at 9:34 PM EDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

ALBANY, Ga. (WALB) - On Friday, the Major League Baseball’s (MLB) summer All-Star Game will no longer be hosted in Atlanta in response to new voting restrictions that Gov. Brian Kemp signed into law on March 25.

Several Georgia lawmakers responded to the announcement from the league:

“Today, Major League Baseball caved to fear, political opportunism, and liberal lies. Georgians-and all Americans - should fully understand what the 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 the truth do not matter.

"This attack on our state is the direct result of repeated lies from Joe Biden and Stacey Abrams about a bill that expands access to the ballot box and ensures the integrity of our elections. I will not back down. Georgians will not be bullied. We will continue to stand up for secure, accessible, fair elections. Earlier today, I spoke with the leadership of the Atlanta Braves who informed me they do not support the MLB's decision.”

Gov. Brian Kemp

“Stacey Abrams’ leftist lies have stolen the All-Star Game from Georgia. This decision is not only economically harmful, it also robs Georgians of a special celebration of our national pastime free of politics. But Georgia will not be bullied by socialists and their sympathizers. We will continue to stand for accessible, secure elections that are free and fair. And we will continue to speak truth despite extortion and intimidation.”

Speaker David Ralston

“Businesses and organizations have great power in their voices and ability to push for change, and I respect the decision of the players to speak out against this unjust law. It is not the people of Georgia or the workers of Georgia who crafted this law, it is politicians seeking to retain power at the expense of Georgians’ voices. And today’s decision by MLB is the unfortunate consequence of these politicians’ actions.

“It is my hope that businesses, athletes, and entertainers can protest this law not by leaving Georgia but by coming here and fighting voter suppression head-on, and hand-in-hand with the community. Additionally, the urgency to pass federal voter protection laws grows every day, and I will continue to be a leader in that fight.”

Sen. Rev. Raphael Warnock

“Georgia Republicans knew exactly what they were doing when they rushed through their voter suppression agenda and passed Senate Bill 202 — now, working Georgians will pay the price. It is ludicrous that Brian Kemp and Georgia Republicans are pretending that the MLB’s decision is about anything other than the GOP’s relentless attacks on voting rights of Black and Brown Georgians, and it is plainly dishonest to ‘both-sides’ a bill that legal experts, activists, and county elections officials all agree will make voting more difficult for Georgians.

If the Georgia GOP cared about Georgia’s economy and the working Georgians that keep our state going, they wouldn’t have tried to steal their votes — full stop.”

Maggie Chambers, Democratic Party of Georgia spokeswoman

Copyright 2021 WALB. All rights reserved.