April 2, 2021 @ 9:12 PM ET
ATLANTA – Major League Baseball announced Friday that it plans to move the 2021 All-Star Game out of Atlanta, citing the new Georgia Voting Law which has civil rights groups worried that it could potentially restrict voting access for people of color.
The new law, SB 202, will now require a form of ID when voting using an absentee ballot. Voters will need to use their driver’s license, voter card, state ID, or the last four digits of their social security number to verify their identity.
SB 202 also requires counties to have increased access to early voting. Each county must have two early voting periods on Saturday. Early voting on Sunday will be optional.
The 2021 MLB draft will also be relocated.
In a statement, MLB commissioner Rob Manfred said the league is “finalizing a new host city and details about these events will be announced shortly.”
“Over the last week, we have engaged in thoughtful conversations with Clubs, former and current players, the Players Association, and The Players Alliance, among others, to listen to their views,” Manfred said in his statement. “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.
The Atlanta Braves said they were “deeply disappointed” by the outcome, and they aren’t alone. Thousands of fans have taken to social media to share their disgust, many calling for Manfred to resign.
2021 would have been the third time Atlanta played host to the MLB All-Star game and the first time in over two decades.