MILWAUKEE — Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett is urging Major League Baseball officials to consider Milwaukee as the new location for the All-Star Game, after the MLB announced Friday they are moving the game and this year's draft from Atlanta over concerns of Georgia's new voting law.
Major League Baseball said the move is a response to the state's new voting law that critics call "unacceptable" and "a step backward.” In a statement, the league said the decision comes after engaging "in thoughtful conversations with Clubs, former and current players, the Players Association, and The Players Alliance."
- MLB to move All-Star game from Georgia in response to state's new voting law
- Georgia governor signs bill after Georgia lawmakers pass GOP election reform bill amid outcry
Just after the league's announcement, Mayor Barrett sent a letter to Commissioner Robert D. Manfred, Jr., writing that he shares his concerns over restricting voting rights in George and elsewhere.
Barrett said he approves of the decision to move the game - and asks Manfred, Jr. to "consider Milwaukee."
"It is a particularly appropriate location to honor Hank Aaron who is a revered and beloved former Milwaukeean. He started and concluded his Major League career with teams here," Mayor Barrett writes.
"The City of Milwaukee would be honored to host the All Star Game, and you would have the full support of my office to make the festivities a success," Barrett concludes.
MLB to move All-Star game from Georgia in response to state's new voting law
The league said they still plan to celebrate Hank Aaron's life and plans to "support local communities in Atlanta as part of our All-Star Legacy Projects" would move forward.
In response to the league's announcement, the Braves issued a statement saying it wasn't their decision nor recommendation for the league to move the All-Star game.
"The Braves organization will continue to stress the importance of equal voting opportunities," according to a statement.
The league said it would announce a new site for the All-Star game and draft shortly.
Georgia governor signs bill after Georgia lawmakers pass GOP election reform bill amid outcry
Lawmakers in Georgia have given final passage to GOP-sponsored legislation that seeks a sweeping overhaul of state election law on Thursday. Shortly after the bill passed, Republican Gov. Brian Kemp signed the bill into law.
It includes provisions that would add new restrictions on voting by mail and giving the legislature greater control over how elections are run. Democrats and voting rights groups complained the bill would disproportionately disenfranchise voters of color.
It’s part of a wave of GOP-backed election bills introduced in states around the country after former President Donald Trump stoked false claims that fraud led to his 2020 election defeat.
President Joe Biden narrowly won the traditional GOP stronghold in November, boosted by a surge of voters utilizing early voting and mail-in ballots.
Opponents of the bill say that it will force voters in urban, generally more liberal areas, to stand in longer lines due. Proponents claim the bill will allow for more secure elections.
Last month, Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger announced there were 35 cases of election fraud that resulted in criminal charges, out of more than 9 million votes cast between the general election and January Senate runoff. A number of the charges were for felons attempting to register or non-citizens attempting to register.
Meanwhile, Congress is considering legislation that would call on states to expand mail-in and no-excuse absentee voting while eliminating photo ID requirements. The legislation has the backing of Biden.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.