Major League Baseball announced this year’s All-Star Game would be relocated out of Atlanta, Georgia, costing the city as much as $190 million in revenue, according to official estimates.
Bill Volckmann, Finance Director for Cobb County, appraised the All-Star Game’s economic impact to fall somewhere between $37 million and $190 million in his 213-page agenda packet. While some dispute the high-end of those projections, it’s safe to say the city – especially lower-wage workers who would have worked the event – would have benefited greatly.
“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 a sharp response from conservatives on Twitter.
The move, 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
But Stacey Abrams, Biden’s power broker in Georgia, said the move “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 has begun “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
Where the game might be re-located, the decision has not been made. Yet, Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) has already requested the game be played in California, where they “actually work to expand voter access — not prevent it,” he said.