Major League Baseball announced that this year’s All-Star Game would be moved out of Atlanta, Georgia due to Georgia’s new voting laws. Thereby costing the city as much as $190 million in revenue, according to official estimates.
Bill Volckmann, Finance Director for Cobb County, estimated the All-Star Game’s economic revenue to be between $37 million and $190 million. While some critics dispute the estimated projections, it’s safe and easy to say that the game would have brought a significant economic impact to the city and would have employed thousands of workers.
“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, Commissioner of Baseball Robert D. Manfred, Jr. said. “Major League Baseball fundamentally supports voting rights for all Americans and opposes restrictions to the ballot box.”
Manfred’s decision drew criticism from conservatives on Twitter.
The relocation, however, will cost the City of Atlanta and “predominantly black Atlanta businesses” $100,000,000 “because rich white leftists complained about GA’s voter integrity law,” John Cardillo tweeted.
“Woke” @MLB just took away the over $100,000,000 in revenue the All-Star Game and draft bring to predominantly black Atlanta businesses because rich white leftists complained about GA’s voter integrity law. pic.twitter.com/Wnj50QogrE
— John Cardillo (@johncardillo) April 2, 2021
The relocation announcement comes after President Joe Biden “strongly” supported the move. Breitbart News reported Biden said he would “strongly support” Major League Baseball moving its All-Star Game out of Atlanta over Georgia’s election law and said that “today’s professional athletes are acting incredibly responsibly” in leagues like the NBA, during an interview with ESPN aired on Wednesday’s “SportsCenter.”
Stacey Abrams said the relocation “disappointed” her. “Disappointed @MLB will move the All-Star Game, but proud of their stance on voting rights. GA GOP traded economic opportunity for suppression. On behalf of PoC targeted by #SB202 to lose votes + now wages, I urge events & productions to come & speak out or stay & fight. #gapol,” Abrams tweeted.
Rep. Jeff Duncan (R-SC) agreed with Abrams and started “drafting legislation to remove Major League Baseball’s federal antitrust exception.”
In light of @MLB's stance to undermine election integrity laws, I have instructed my staff to begin drafting legislation to remove Major League Baseball's federal antitrust exception.
— Rep. Jeff Duncan (@RepJeffDuncan) April 2, 2021
The new location has not yet been decided. However, Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) has requested the game be played in California, where they “actually work to expand voter access — not prevent it,” he said.