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THE STAKES 2020: Calandra Davis on how elections shape poor Mississippians' lives

October 26, 2020 - Mississippi is one of the poorest states in America, and one-third of Black Mississippians live under the federal poverty line. We spoke with Calandra Davis, a policy analyst at Hope Policy Institute and a community activist, about how federal elections affect the regulatory state and thus people's access to affordable housing, health care, and banking.

THE STAKES 2020: Catherine Coleman Flowers on the environmental justice movement and elections

October 23, 2020 - Across the rural South's Black Belt, the lack of adequate sewage and water infrastructure has created serious public health problems. We spoke with Catherine Coleman Flowers, a longtime environmental justice activist in rural Alabama and the recent recipient of a MacArthur Foundation "genius" grant, about her work to draw attention to the region's intersecting crises and how grassroots activism can impact federal policy. 

Federal judges block efforts to ease rules for mail-in ballots

October 22, 2020 - As millions of voters cast ballots this month, federal courts in the South shot down attempts to make voting easier during the pandemic, and some relied on a novel argument giving them more power to overrule state courts. The rulings have led to calls to expand the Supreme Court and lower courts if Democrats take the White House and Senate.