Sign up for our daily briefing

Make your busy days simpler with Axios AM/PM. Catch up on what's new and why it matters in just 5 minutes.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Catch up on the day's biggest business stories

Subscribe to Axios Closer for insights into the day’s business news and trends and why they matter

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Sign up for Axios Pro Rata

Dive into the world of dealmakers across VC, PE and M&A with Axios Pro Rata. Delivered daily to your inbox by Dan Primack and Kia Kokalitcheva.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Sports news worthy of your time

Binge on the stats and stories that drive the sports world with Axios Sports. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Tech news worthy of your time

Get our smart take on technology from the Valley and D.C. with Axios Login. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Get the inside stories

Get an insider's guide to the new White House with Axios Sneak Peek. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Denver news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Denver

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Des Moines news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Des Moines

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Twin Cities news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Twin Cities

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Tampa Bay news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Tampa Bay

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Charlotte news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Charlotte

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Nashville news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Nashville newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Columbus news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Columbus newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Dallas news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Dallas newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Austin news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Austin newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Atlanta news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Atlanta newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Philadelphia news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Philadelphia newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Chicago news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Chicago newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Sign up for Axios NW Arkansas

Stay up-to-date on the most important and interesting stories affecting NW Arkansas, authored by local reporters

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top DC news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios DC newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Paul Miller / Flickr cc

Y Combinator, the famed Silicon Valley startup accelerator, has been accepting non-profits into its program since 2013, but none have been of the size and caliber as the ACLU. The 98-year-old organization took part in Y Combinator's latest session after a conversation about working together on a project led YC to extend an invitation to the ACLU into its program.

Joining YC as a non-profit: Just like other non-profits who joined Y Combinator's program, the ACLU received $200,000—$100,000 as the standard donation to all non-profits, and the rest from YC president Sam Altman personally. However, unlike others who moved at least temporarily to the Bay Area to attend the program's events and meet with mentors, YC sent folks to New York City to work with the ACLU at its headquarters. Cadran Cowansage, one of YC's software developers, has been on-site for the last four weeks working with the team.

The work: One of the most visible projects YC helped the ACLU with its digital tools is the latter's new People Power grassroots initiative, which provides local organizers with guides to putting pressure on their local officials. "We will continue to do important work in the courts but with tech platforms and tech tools, it will allow us to take our work into the streets," ACLU executive director Anthony Romero told Axios.

Other projects YC has been helping with include the ACLU's emails to members, migrating its data to Salesforce, revamping its Mobile Justice app.

Lesson from working together: "Very often we're dealing with crises of the moment, but the YC folks are helping us think through longer term tech planning," Romero told Axios, adding that ways to use online tools to engage the ACLU's members offline have been an area of particular focus. "We're cutting edge lawyers and policy advocates but we don't pretend to be cutting edge when it comes to tech," he also said.

For Cowansage, this was her first experience working with a non-profit organization, she told Axios. Along with being pleasantly surprised with the high level of commitment from volunteer engineers, she said it also gave her a perspective on how companies and individuals can most effectively work with an organization like the ACLU.

What about the backlash and concerns over YC having influence over the ACLU? "I think it's great that there's a lot of debate in our democracy about the work of the ACLU but we have regularly worked with for-profit entities who work with our interests and help us achieve our goals" so it's not a concern for Romero, he told Axios. He adds that when YC offered to help the non-profit, it was "a no-brainer" to take them up on it. "I think they have the right values," he said of YC.

For her part, Cowansage emphasized YC is "not giving any sort of advice about how the ACLU should handle the donations they received," and that she's been solely focused on the organization's tech projects.

The story has been updated to clarify that $100,00 of donations came from YC and the rest from president Sam Altman personally.

Go deeper

Justice Department closes Emmett Till murder probe

A faded photograph is attached to the headstone that marks the gravesite of Emmett Till in Burr Oak Cemetery in Chicago. Photo: Scott Olson via Getty Images

The family of Emmett Till announced Monday that the Department of Justice has formally closed its second investigation into the 1955 murder of Emmett Till.

Why it matters: The DOJ reopened the probe in 2018 after the white woman at the center of the case reportedly recanted her allegation that Till, a Black 14-year-old, sexually harassed her prior to his murder.

GOP Rep. Devin Nunes to retire, will be CEO of Trump media org

Rep. Devin Nunes. Photo: Dylan Hollingsworth/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.), who serves as the top Republican on the House Intelligence Committee, will retire at the end of the year and become CEO of Trump's new media organization.

Why it matters: Nunes, once considered a moderate member of the party, became one of the fiercest defenders of former President Donald Trump throughout both of Trump's impeachments and the Intel committee's Russia investigation.

DOJ cites discrimination in lawsuit against Texas over voting districts

Attorney General Merrick Garland. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

The Department of Justice on Monday filed a lawsuit against Texas, alleging Republican state lawmakers discriminated against Black and Latino voters and has "again diluted the voting strength of minority Texans" when they approved new redistricting maps.

Why it matters: A DOJ assessment of the new districts found that they violate Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act, Attorney General Merrick Garland said at a press conference.