LeBron James has joined forces with other athletes and celebrities to launch a campaign to fight racist voter suppression. More Than a Vote promises to do more than merely encourage people to cast ballots. “Yes we want you to go out and vote,” James told the New York Times, “but we’re also going to give you the tutorial. We’re going to give you the background on how to vote and what they’re trying to do—the other side—to stop you from voting.”
Crucially, More Than a Vote is working to raise awareness around the common misconception that being convicted of a felony means a lifetime ban from voting. In California, for example, voting rights are restored in full once a convicted person has been released from prison and successfully completed parole.
In Florida, convicted felons have to complete their sentences, parole periods and pay off any outstanding fines and fees before they can cast a ballot. Last month, More Than a Vote donated $100,000 towards helping to pay off those debts, via the Florida Rights Restoration Coalition.
The initiative is also collaborating with other voting rights organizations, including When We All Vote, which simplifies the registration process, and Fair Fight, which is building “voter protection teams” and raising awareness about voting suppression tactics.