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Sen. Robert F. Kennedy (D-N.Y.) stoops to chat during a visit to a one-room schoolhouse on Feb. 13, 1968, during a two-day tour of eastern Kentucky's poverty pockets. Photo: Bettmann Archive

Starting in 2004, Appalachian counties filled with Kennedy Democrats began to shift Republican during presidential races. "And in 2016, Donald Trump carried each with 70% to 80% of the vote," USA Today's Rick Hampson writes from Barwick, Kentucky.

Why it matters: "What was Kennedy country is Trump country. Children of Kennedy Democrats are Trump Republicans."

RFK's visit to Appalachia — 50 years ago:

  • "The line of big cars pulled up outside the one-room schoolhouse, which had a potbelly stove for heat and an outhouse in back,"
  • "The senator burst in the door, followed by a pack of politicians, aides and journalists."
  • "Robert F. Kennedy had come to learn about rural poverty. Instead, his arrival petrified the students, who sat riveted to their ancient desks with their heads down, afraid to even look at the great man and his entourage."
  • "Instead of making a speech for the media, Kennedy moved quietly among the students, stopping to reassure them. He’d squeeze a hand, murmur in an ear. 'What did you have to eat today?' he asked one girl. 'I know you’re scared,' he told a boy, 'but it’s gonna be all right.'"
  • "For two days, he met people as poor and isolated as he was rich and famous."
  • "That was 50 years ago — Feb. 13, 1968. Bobby Kennedy was a month from declaring for president and four months from an assassin’s bullet."

Go deeper

Federal judge orders Trump administration to restore DACA

DACA recipients and their supporters rally outside the U.S. Supreme Court on June 18. Photo: Drew Angerer via Getty

A federal judge on Friday ordered the Trump administration to fully restore the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, giving undocumented immigrants who arrived in the U.S. as children a chance to petition for protection from deportation.

Why it matters: DACA was implemented under former President Obama, but President Trump has sought to undo the program since taking office. Friday’s ruling will require Department of Homeland Security officers to begin accepting applications starting Monday and guarantee that work permits are valid for two years.

Updated 58 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Politics: Fauci says he accepted Biden's offer to be chief medical adviser "on the spot" — The recovery needs rocket fuel.
  2. Health: CDC: It's time for "universal face mask use" — Death rates rising across the country — Study: Increased testing can reduce transmission.
  3. Economy: U.S. economy adds 245,000 jobs in November as recovery slows — America's hidden depression: K-shaped recovery threatens Biden administration.
  4. Cities: Bay Area counties to enact stay-at-home order ahead of state mandate
  5. Vaccine: What vaccine trials still need to do.
  6. World: UN warns "2021 is literally going to be catastrophic"
  7. 🎧 Podcast: Former FDA chief Rob Califf on the vaccine approval process.
2 hours ago - Health

Bay Area counties to enact stay-at-home order ahead of state mandate

Golden Gate Park. Photo: Justin Sullivan via Getty

Counties around the San Francisco Bay Area will adopt California’s new regional stay-at-home order amid surges in cases and ICU hospitalizations, health officials said Friday.

The big picture: California Gov. Gavin Newsom announced a three-week stay-at-home order on Thursday that would go into effect in regions with less than 15% ICU capacity. Despite the Bay Area’s current 25.3% ICU capacity, health officials from Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Santa Clara, San Francisco and the city of Berkeley are moving ahead with a shelter-in-place mandate in the hopes of reducing risk.

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