May 20, 2018

State Department's anti-ISIS office for Syria will remain open

Photo: Nicholas Kamm/AFP/Getty Images

The State Department plans to keep open a special unit overseeing the counterterrorism fight against ISIS in Syria at least for six more months, reports the AP, undercutting President Trump's call to wrap up U.S. involvement in the country as soon as possible.

Yes, but: On Friday, State officials told Axios that the administration will slash funding for counterterrorism, civil society and governance programs in northwestern Syria following a review undertaken at Trump's request.

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Trump gets "woke" in 15-city campaign to court black voters

The Trump campaign is leaning into its effort to woo African-American voters, opening "Black Voices for Trump" offices across six swing states, the campaign says.

Why it matters: "Woke" stickers, "Black Voices for Trump" T-shirts and other branded swag is part of this storefront approach as the campaign ramps up its efforts to erode Democrats' lock on this key demographic.

House passes bill to make lynching a federal hate crime

Photo: Aaron P. Bauer-Griffin/GC Images via Getty Images

The House voted 410-4 on Wednesday to pass legislation to designate lynching as a federal hate crime.

Why it matters: Congress has tried and failed for over 100 years to pass measures to make lynching a federal crime.

This year's census may be the toughest count yet

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Community leaders are concerned that historically hard-to-count residents will be even harder to count in this year's census, thanks to technological hurdles and increased distrust in government.

Why it matters: The census — which will count more than 330 million people this year — determines how $1.5 trillion in federal funding gets allocated across state and local governments. Inaccurate counts mean that communities don't get their fair share of those dollars.