Major League Baseball (MLB) has said they are pulling this year’s All-Star Game from Atlanta. However, they won’t be going anywhere without a legal fight.
The Job Creators Network (JCN), a conservative group representing small businesses, plans to file a lawsuit against MLB and their Players Union in hopes of forcing the league to return the game to Atlanta or compensate the Atlanta businesses impacted by the league’s decision to leave due to Georgia’s voter reform laws.
According to Fox Business Network’s Charles Gasparino:
FOX Business has learned that the right-leaning trade group founded by Home Depot co-founder Bernie Marcus — plans to file a lawsuit in Manhattan federal court Tuesday morning alleging that MLB’s decision has injured Atlanta’s small business community. Also to be named in the lawsuit, according to a person with direct knowledge of the matter is the Major League Baseball Players Association – the union which represents some 1,200 players – and which the Job Creators Network contends played a role in the decision to move the game out of Atlanta to Denver.
The league announced its decision to relocate the All-Star Game from Atlanta within 48 hours of President Biden saying that he would “strongly support” MLB moving the 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.
“MLB robbed the small businesses of Atlanta – many of them minority-owned – of $100 million. We want the game back where it belongs,” JCN President Alfredo Ortiz told FOX Business. “This was a knee-jerk, hypocritical and illegal reaction to misinformation about Georgia’s new voting law which includes voter ID.”
Ortiz continued, “Major League Baseball itself requests ID at will call ticket windows at Yankee Stadium in New York, Busch Stadium in St. Louis, and at ballparks all across the country.”
In April, MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred justified his league’s decision as a statement of support for voting rights.
“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.”
JCN President Alfredo Ortiz has pointed to data suggesting that MLB’s decision to pull the All-Star Game from Atlanta could cost local businesses upwards of $100 million.
Follow Dylan Gwinn on Twitter @themightygwinn