Former President Barack Obama praised Major League Baseball for their decision to pull this year’s All-Star game from Atlanta in protest of the state’s new restrictive election laws.
“Congratulations to @MLB for taking a stand on behalf of voting rights for all citizens. There’s no better way for America’s pastime to honor the great Hank Aaron, who always led by example,” Obama tweeted on Saturday.
MLB announced on Friday that it was pulling its “Midsummer Classic” set for July 13 at Truist Park out of Atlanta in opposition of the new restrictions on voting Gov. Brian Kemp (R) signed into law last month.
“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,” MLB Commissioner Robert D. Manfred Jr. said in a statement. “Major League Baseball fundamentally supports voting rights for all Americans and opposes restrictions to the ballot box.”
Democrats in Georgia say they are disappointed with the move but they understood the stance the MLB was taking.
“Like many Georgians, I am disappointed that the MLB is relocating the All-Star game; however, I commend the players, owners and League commissioner for speaking out,” voting rights advocate Stacey Abrams said in a statement. “As I have stated I respect boycotts, although I don’t want to see Georgia families hurt by lost events and jobs. Georgians targeted by voter suppression will be hurt as opportunities go to other states. We should not abandon the victims of GOP malice and lies –we must stand together.”