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Politics & Policy

Biden’s Call for MLB to Move All-Star Game from Georgia Contradicts Pledge to Unify America

President Joe Biden swears in presidential appointees in a virtual ceremony in the State Dining Room of the White House, January 20, 2021. (Tom Brenner/Reuters)

President Biden, in an interview with ESPN ahead of today’s opening day, said he would “strongly support” MLB moving baseball’s All-Star Game from Georgia over its election law which he dishonestly described as “Jim Crow on steroids.”

Asked about the MLB Players Association considering moving the all-star game from Georgia over the election law, Biden said:

I think today’s professional athletes are acting incredibly responsibly. I would strongly support them doing that. People look to them, they’re leaders. Look at what’s happened with the NBA, as well. Look what’s happened across the board. The very people who are victimized the most are the people who are the leaders in these various sports, and it’s just not right. This is Jim Crow on steroids, what they’re doing in Georgia and 40 other states.

He went on to go back to his favorite debunked talking point about the law: “Imagine passing a law saying you cannot provide water or food to somebody standing in line to vote.”

Overheated rhetoric aside, his support for boycotting a state for passing a law he disagrees with is completely at odds with the message of “unity” he campaigned on and made the theme of his inauguration.

“America isn’t just a collection of clashing interests of Red States or Blue States,” he said at his speech to the Democratic National Convention. “We’re so much bigger than that.”

Well, now he is urging a sports league to go after a purple state.

In his Inaugural Address, Biden said, “And I pledge this to you: I will be a President for all Americans. I will fight as hard for those who did not support me as for those who did.”

Yet this is not how you fight hard for all Americans. Especially given that if the All-Star Game were to move, it wouldn’t be Republican lawmakers or Governor Brian Kemp who would feel the hit most directly. It would be the hot-dog vendors, hotel and restaurant workers, or the people selling T-shirts or ice cream or bottles of water outside the stadium.

Punishing a state over a piece of legislation is not a way to unify Americans. It’s a way to further divide Americans.

Video of Biden’s interview with ESPN here (relevant section comes at about the 5:45 part):


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