LeBron James Says He's 'Proud' to Be Part of MLB Family After ASG RelocationApril 2, 2021
Los Angeles Lakers superstar LeBron James, who's part-owner of the Boston Red Sox, said Friday he's a "proud" member of the MLB family after the league announced it's moving the 2021 All-Star Game away from the Atlanta Braves' Truist Park because of Georgia's new voting law.
Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp signed the law March 26 after both Republican-led chambers in the state's legislature swiftly passed the bill, which Kemp said would "take another step toward ensuring our elections are secure, accessible, and fair."
President Joe Biden said the law, which added further identification requirements, gave more power to state officials to oversee local election boards, decreased voting availability via drop boxes and created criminal liability for offering water to those waiting to vote, is akin to "Jim Crow in the 21st Century."
Georgia, where Biden defeated incumbent Donald Trump in the 2020 election, became the first traditionally Republican state to pass increased voting requirements following Trump's unproven claims of widespread voter fraud following his 306-232 Electoral College loss. Other states are working on similar measures.
James worked alongside several other athletes, musicians and other celebrities as part of the More Than a Vote campaign leading up to last year's election.
The four-time NBA champion joined the Red Sox's ownership group Wednesday.
MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred said details about a new host city for the All-Star Game will be released "shortly" and made a statement about the decision to move the event out of Atlanta:
"Major League Baseball fundamentally supports voting rights for all Americans and opposes restrictions to the ballot box. In 2020, MLB became the first professional sports league to join the non-partisan Civic Alliance to help build a future in which everyone participates in shaping the United States. We proudly used our platform to encourage baseball fans and communities throughout our country to perform their civic duty and actively participate in the voting process. Fair access to voting continues to have our game's unwavering support."
Meanwhile, the Braves expressed disappointment in the league's decision:
The All-Star Game is scheduled to take place July 13.