ATLANTA, Ga. (NBC) – Now, the battle that’s gone from the voting booth to the baseball diamond, here’s the latest on Georgia’s controversial voting restrictions.
Major League Baseball throwing Georgia a curveball over the state’s controversial new voting law, moving the league’s all-star game to a new home, Denver’s Coors Field, and taking with it millions in tourist revenue once headed to Atlanta.
All of it sets up a showdown between Georgia’s Republican governor and Atlanta’s Democratic Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms. She said, “Look at the law and the damage that’s already happened to our state. 100 million dollars have been lost.”
Overnight, the mayor issued an executive order taking steps to reduce the impact of some parts of the law, including training city staff on voter registration, educating residents on how to obtain the id needed for absentee voting, and developing PSAs around new voting deadlines and timelines.
Critics say the law restricts access to the ballot, especially among black voters, and that Atlanta – a Democratic stronghold – would be hit especially hard.
But Republicans are crying foul, saying the law makes elections more secure and accusing the league of caving to cancel culture.
Georgia Governor Brian Kemp (R) told Fox News: “I tell you who’s getting screwed, it’s the little guy. It’s the little guy working in Georgia, working in these ball parks, taverns and hotels that now are not gonna have guests.”
This all comes after two major Georgia0-based companies – Delta and Coca-Cola – took a public stand against the law after it passed.
While the PGA Tour decided to keep its championship in Georgia, golfers are carefully weighing in.
Professional Golfer Rory McIlroy said, “I’m all for people being able to have right to vote and to do it in the easiest way possible.”
Fellow golfer Phil Mickelson stated, “Not really familiar with details of law but I do believe in the rights and treating all people equal.”
Now, the fight is stretching well beyond the Peach State. This week, Texas Governor Greg Abbott (R) declined to throw the first pitch at the Texas Rangers home opener in protest and the Senate’s top Republican, Mitch McConnell, had this message for corporate America: “Stay out of politics, it’s not what you’re designed for.”
From the Biden White House, where the president supported baseball’s move: “The best way to deal with this is for Georgia and other states to smarten up.”