(LEX 18) — On Tuesday, GOP leader Mitch McConnell warned businesses to stay out of politics. This is a response to businesses making public statements in opposition to Georgia's new controversial voting law.
"Stay out of politics," said Sen. McConnell. "It's not what you're designed for."
McConnell referenced Delta Air Lines, Coca-Cola, and Major League Baseball for their reactions to Georgia's law.
"Republicans drink Coca-Cola too. And we fly. And we like baseball," said McConnell as he encouraged business leaders to "stay out of politics."
Major League Baseball has found itself facing criticism for moving its All-Star game out of Atlanta. Kentucky Senator Rand Paul suggested a boycott of the group on Twitter.
"Maybe Republicans should boycott Major League Baseball?" he asked on Twitter.
If @mlb is boycotting states that pass Republican election integrity laws, maybe Republicans should boycott Major League Baseball?— Senator Rand Paul (@RandPaul) April 5, 2021
Commissioner of Baseball Robert D. Manfred, Jr. said the decision was made to move its events out of Georgia after "thoughtful conversations with Clubs, former and current players, the Players Association, and The Players Alliance."
In a statement, he said "Major League Baseball fundamentally supports voting rights for all Americans and opposes restrictions to the ballot box."
"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," said Manfred. "Fair access to voting continues to have our game’s unwavering support."
Some people have commended the decision.
"Congratulations to @MLB for taking a stand on behalf of voting rights for all citizens," tweeted former President Barack Obama.
Congratulations to @MLB for taking a stand on behalf of voting rights for all citizens. There’s no better way for America’s pastime to honor the great Hank Aaron, who always led by example.— Barack Obama (@BarackObama) April 3, 2021
But others have criticized the move.
"This is quite stupid to jump in the middle of a highly controversial issue," said McConnell.
McConnell defended companies donating to political campaigns, but he warned CEOs to stop taking positions on controversial topics.
"Most of them contribute to both sides. They have political action committees. That's fine. It's legal. It's appropriate. I support that," said McConnell. "I'm talking about taking a position on a highly incendiary issue like this and punishing a community or a state because you don't like a particular law that's passed. I just think it's stupid."