The NBA won’t host Election Day games in an effort to increase voter turnout

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nba announced on Tuesday that it would not host any basketball games this upcoming Election Day to encourage voter turnout.

“The decision of the determination derives from the NBA family’s focus on promoting non-partisan civic engagement and encouraging fans to plan how to vote during the midterm election,” the league said in a tweet.

This year’s midterm election, which has historically seen far less turnout than the presidential election, is due on November 8.

All 30 teams in the NBA will play games the day before the election where they will encourage attendees and spectators to vote.

The NBA has held games regularly in the past midterm election days, including four in 2018, six in 2016, and eight in 2014.

James Cadogan, Executive Director of the NBA Social justice Coalition, said in an interview with msnbc on Tuesday that it is a rare move for the league.

“This is unusual. We don’t usually change the schedule of an outside event, but polling and election day are clearly unique and very important to our democracy,” Cadogan said.

While most states provide relatively easy access to early and absentee voting by mail, a handful limit most citizens to vote in person, a policy that voting rights groups have found disproportionately difficult. Is. low income voters, people of color and other historically oppressed demographics to cast their ballots. Nevertheless, lawmakers across the country continued introduce bill Many have cited baseless voter fraud conspiracy theories to make it harder for people to vote.

NBA players have become active in suffrage movement in the light of those legislative efforts. Four-time NBA Champion LeBron James assembles a group of Black athletes and celebrities for his 2020 more than one vote Initiatives to fight voter suppression laws and educate black voters about the barriers they face.

“We’re going to give you the background on how to vote,” he said at the time, “and what they’re trying to do, on the other hand, to stop you from voting.”

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