In his Saturday tweet praising the league’s move, Obama added that “there’s no better way for America’s pastime to honor the great Hank Aaron, who always led by example.”
MLB’s decision to move the game comes as the tourism industry, one of the hardest hit during the Covid-19 pandemic, is still struggling to rebound.
The “estimated lost economic impact” from the MLB “All-Star Game relocation is more than $100 million,” according to a statement from Holly Quinlan, a Cobb County tourism official.
Kemp blasted the MLB’s decision during a Saturday news conference as caving to “fear and lies from liberal activists” and putting “the wishes” of Biden and Stacey Abrams, a Georgia Democrat and voting rights advocate, “ahead of the economic well-being of hard-working Georgians who were counting on the All-Star Game for a paycheck.”
Atlanta’s Democratic Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms told CNN’s Fredricka Whitfield on Saturday that the MLB’s decision would likely be the “first of many boycotts of our state to come” and urged Republican state lawmakers, who passed the measure, to repeal it or make changes.
Bottoms told CNN that while she doesn’t like MLB’s decision to pull the game from her city, “I certainly understand it,” adding that “it is hurting our economy and it’s my hope that, finally, leaders across the state will listen.”
“Just as the legislators and the governor made the decision to go forward with this bill, people are making decisions not to come to our state. And it’s going to impact millions of Georgians, employment, small businesses, our corporations, and it’s very unfortunate,” she said.
The new host city for the July 13 game has yet to be announced, according to the league.
This story has been updated with additional details Saturday.
CNN’s Ali Main, Brian Rokus, Jessica Campisi, Chris Isidore, Steve Almasy and David Close contributed to this report.