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Students get off a Black Votes Matter bus in Fayetteville, N.C., in March. Photo: Melissa Sue Gerrits/Getty Images

The coronavirus has complicated the get-out-the-vote effort for Black churches in 2020.

Why it matters: Those churches are a key part of broader efforts in the Black community to push back against voter suppression tactics, the AP reports.

  • Churches have organized socially distant caravans with greatly reduced transportation capacity for early voting and Election Day ballot-casting.
  • Church volunteers are phone-banking and canvasing the homes of their members to ensure mail-in and absentee ballots are requested and hand-delivered to election board offices or drop boxes before the deadlines.
  • Many churches are still forced to hold virtual services, limiting their organizational might.

"It's not whether there are enough votes out there," said Cliff Albright, a co-founder of Black Voters Matter.

  • "It's whether we have the strategy, the resources and the election protection to make sure that the voters who want to show up are actually able to do so and be counted."

Flashback: "Souls to the polls" traces back to the 1955 assassination of the Rev. George Lee, a Black Mississippi entrepreneur, by white supremacists after he helped nearly 100 Black residents register to vote.

  • The cemetery where Lee is buried has served as a polling place.

The bottom line: Some Black Americans say they want to vote in person because of President Trump's overt campaign against mail-in voting.

  • "I'm now determined more than ever to go to the polls and cast my ballot in person, as opposed to by mail," said 53-year-old Jane Bonner of Georgia.

Go deeper

Felix Salmon, author of Capital
Dec 19, 2020 - Economy & Business

Why the racial homeownership gap persists

Photo illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios. Photos: H. Armstrong Roberts (Classicstock), Cliff de Bear (Newsday RM), Lambert/Getty Images

The homeownership gap between Black and white Americans is worse today than when race-based housing laws and policies were in effect decades ago.

Why it matters: Decades of unequal access to mortgage financing have had a predictable effect: Non-white Americans have much lower homeownership rates, lower wealth and a higher degree of financial precarity. This is especially true among Black Americans.

Ina Fried, author of Login
3 hours ago - Technology

Intel CEO sees making own chips as a matter of national security

Pat Gelsinger. Photo: Axios on HBO

Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger is putting the pressure on the U.S. government to help subsidize chip manufacturing, insisting the current reliance on plants in Taiwan and Korea as "geopolitically unstable."

Why it matters: There is bipartisan support for funding the domestic semiconductor industry, but Congress has yet to sign the check. The Senate has passed the CHIPS Act that includes $52 billion in semiconductor investment, but it has yet to pass the House.

Updated 4 hours ago - World

17 U.S. and Canadian missionaries kidnapped in Haiti

Haitian soldiers guard the public prosecutor's office in Port-au-Prince this month. Photo: Richard Pierrin/AFP via Getty Images

Children are among a group of 17 missionaries kidnapped in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, per a statement from Christian Aid Ministries Sunday.

The latest: "The group of 16 U.S citizens and one Canadian citizen includes five men, seven women, and five children," the Ohio-based group said. Haitian police inspector Frantz Champagne on Sunday identified the 400 Mawozo gang as the group responsible, in a statement to AP.

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