LeBron James, like the many other NBA players, is focused on voting as Election Day nears. Through his More Than A Vote Campaign, James has worked all summer to return the franchise to Americans who are often disempowered, and has partnered with Win Black to battle misinformation directed at Black voters.
In an interview with Astead W. Herndon of the New York Times, James explained his work this fall. Focusing on voting rights and community education is James’ plan rather than engaging in a war of words with President Donald Trump, with whom he has butted heads in the past.
“I don’t go back and forth with anybody. And I damn sure won’t go back and forth with that guy,” James said. “But we want better, we want change in our community. We always talk about, “We want change,” and now we have the opportunity to do that.”
The reigning NBA Finals MVP sees too much at stake this election cycle to get caught up in a controversy with the president. Data from 2016 shows millions of Black Americans did not vote in the presidential election after turning out in record numbers in 2008 and 2012. Organizations like More Than A Vote and Win Black are hoping to reverse that trend in 2020. The potential of that work, according to James, is far greater than whatever he might gain from spending his energy bashing the president.
“You know, there’s so many stats out there, you can see it every time,” James said. “Who didn’t vote? What counties didn’t vote? What communities didn’t vote? And a lot of that has had to do with our Black people. So, hopefully, we can get them out and educated and let them understand how important this moment is.”
With about two weeks to go until Election Day, James is hoping one last blitz aimed at empowering young Black people about the power of their vote can make a difference in the outcomes for local and national politics.