Former President Donald Trump called on his supporters to “boycott baseball” after the sport’s major league decided to move its All-Star game out of Atlanta in the wake of the state’s governor signing a new restrictive voting bill into law last week.
“Baseball is already losing tremendous numbers of fans, and now they leave Atlanta with their All-Star Game because they are afraid of the Radical Left Democrats who do not want voter I.D., which is desperately needed, to have anything to do with our elections,” Trump said in a statement released by Save America PAC.
“Boycott baseball and all of the woke companies that are interfering with Free and Fair Elections. Are you listening Coke, Delta, and all!” he added. The statement rebuking baseball and companies challenging the state’s overhaul of voting rights was first reported by The Hill.
Trump’s comments come after the MLB announced its decision to relocate the game which was initially scheduled for July 13 at the Atlanta Braves’ Truist Park, after the state signed new restrictive elections rules into law.
“Major League Baseball fundamentally supports voting rights for all Americans and opposes restrictions to the ballot box,” MLB commissioner Robert Manfred Jr. said in a statement released Friday.
Trump has repeatedly put forward conspiracy theories about a stolen election and has scapegoated Georgia — falsely claiming that widespread voter fraud had cost him victory in the state in the 2020 presidential election.
President Joe Biden who has been outspoken in his opposition to the legislation said he would “strongly support” moving this year’s All-Star Game out of Georgia following the bill’s passage.
“I think today’s professional athletes are acting incredibly responsibly,” he said during an ESPN interview. “I would strongly support them doing that. People look to them. They’re leaders.”
The statement by MLB and its decision to relocate the game comes after a series of rebukes from major Atlanta-based corporations, including Delta Air Lines, Coca-Cola and Microsoft.
Delat Air Lines CEO Ed Bastian said the law “includes provisions that will make it harder for many underrepresented voters, particularly Black voters, to exercise their constitutional right to elect their representatives.”
Kemp, who had repeatedly defended the legislation, joined Republican colleagues in blaming “cancel culture” for the MLB’s decision in a Friday statement.
“Today, Major League Baseball caved to fear, political opportunism, and liberal lies” Kemp said. “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.”