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The Supreme Court throws out a Trump-era ban on gun bump stocks; a look at how social media algorithms and Shakespearian villains have in common; and states receive federal funding to clean up legacy mine pollution.

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The Supreme Court for now protects access to abortion drug mifepristone, while Senate Republicans block a bill protecting access to in-vitro fertilization. Wisconsin's Supreme Court bans mobile voting sites, and colleges deal with funding cuts as legislatures target diversity programs.

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As summer nears, America's newest and largest international dark sky sanctuary beckons, rural job growth is up, but full recovery remains elusive, rural Americans living in prison towns support a transition, while birth control is more readily available in rural areas.

Black voters in battleground states are a crucial voting bloc in 2024

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Thursday, May 23, 2024   

Black voters will play a key role in determining who will win the 2024 presidential election.

And while Black voters remain overwhelmingly Democratic and support President Joe Biden over former President Donald Trump, Biden's edge over Trump is changing.

A new poll shows Trump ahead of Biden in five crucial battleground states, one being Nevada, over discontent about the economy and the war in Gaza - especially among young, voters of color.

Rashawn Ray, senior fellow of governance studies with the Brookings Institution, said - contrary to a popular misconception - Black voters are not a monolith and do turn out to vote, with 2024 being no exception.

"Oftentimes they are choosing between the lesser of two evils, because we have an overly simplistic two-party system," said Ray, "and then the other part of this is, there are some people who rather stay at home rather than vote for someone who they don't think aligns with their particular politics and their cultural values."

Ray said the narrative that Black people don't vote is simply not true. Eligible Black voters stand out for higher turnout rates than their Latino and Asian counterparts, according to Pew Research Center.

They also tend to be younger than voters overall, with about 60% of eligible Black voters being under the age of 50.

Project Director with the nonprofit Black Girls Vote, Ashley C.J. Daniels, describes Black women as a powerhouse behind Democratic Party wins, saying many have gotten politically engaged, especially since 2020.

But she added that researchers like her know there is what she calls an "enthusiasm gap" in the 2024 election.

"Looking at some of the data, you have numerous reasons why there is an enthusiasm gap," said Daniels. "You have some Black folks that are concerned about the ceasefire that is going in Gaza, and then you have some Black folks that are concerned about reproductive justice. You have others that are concerned about economics - so there is a variance."

Daniels said it is important politicians understand that the Black vote is more complex than was previously considered.

Black voters hold a range of ideologies, including conservative views that account for about 10% of Black voters consistently casting their ballots for Republican candidates.

Supporting for this reporting was provided by the Carnegie Corporation of New York.




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