Photo: Patrick McDermott/Getty Images

The national dialogue about racism has renewed calls for the Washington Redskins to change their name — and now protesters are targeting their sponsors, something a former high-ranking team official called "different."

Driving the news: Nike, FedEx and PepsiCo each received letters signed by 87 investors and shareholders worth a combined $620 billion asking the brands to cut ties with the Redskins unless they change their name, AdWeek reports.

The backdrop: When a 2016 Washington Post poll found nine in 10 Native Americans weren't offended by the name, Redskins owner Daniel Snyder said the team, fans and community believe it "represents honor, respect and pride."

Meanwhile, in D.C., officials made it clear Wednesday that Snyder will not be able to build a new stadium on the 190-acre, federally-owned RFK Stadium site unless he changes the team's name, per WashPost.

  • "There is no viable path, locally or federally, for the Washington football team to return to Washington, D.C., without first changing the team name," said D.C. Deputy Mayor John Falcicchio. (They currently play in Landover, Md.)
  • "The time [for the name] has ended. There is no way to justify it. You either step into this century or you don't," said U.S. Rep. Raúl M. Grijalva (D-Ariz.).

Go deeper: The 72 hours that changed the NFL

Go deeper

Jul 22, 2020 - Sports

The complicated process of changing an NFL team name

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Changing a team name is a complicated process and typically takes years, but the Washington Redskins are trying to do it in a matter of weeks, amid a pandemic, while concurrently conducting an internal sexual harassment investigation.

The state of play: The last NFL team to change its name was the Tennessee Oilers — now the Titans — in 1999, but that stemmed from the franchise having moved from Houston.

20 mins ago - Health

Axios-Ipsos poll: Fear of voting

Data: Axios/Ipsos poll; Note: ±3.0% margin of error for the total sample; Chart: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios

Democrats are twice as likely as Republicans to worry about in-person voting — with nearly two in three seeing it as a large or moderate risk to their health — according to this week's installment of the Axios-Ipsos Coronavirus Index.

Why it matters: This could pose a significant disadvantage for Joe Biden and other Democratic candidates in November if the pattern holds — especially in states where high infection rates persist, or where there are significant hurdles to mail-in, absentee or early voting.

Trump: Coronavirus is "under control"

President Trump said in an interview with “Axios on HBO” that he thinks the coronavirus is as well-controlled in the U.S. as it can be, despite dramatic surges in new infections over the course of the summer and more than 150,000 American deaths.

  • “They are dying, that's true. And you have — it is what it is. But that doesn't mean we aren't doing everything we can. It's under control as much as you can control it. This is a horrible plague,” he told Axios' Jonathan Swan.