A get-out-the vote group led by former Los Angeles Lakers superstar LeBron James and First Lady Michelle Obama will team up to provide food, protective gear, free legal advice, and rides to the polls for people voting early in the U.S. election.
Obama’s “When We All Vote” and James’ “More Than A Vote” will host catered events featuring professional DJs and guest appearances by celebrities near polling locations to encourage early voting ahead of the Nov. 3 election, the groups said in a statement.
As part of the initiative, Ride-hailing firm Lyft Inc will offer discounted rides to early voting sites and the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law and the Election Protection Coalition will provide attorneys who can advocate for voters casting their ballots in the showdown between President Donald Trump and Democratic challenger Joe Biden.
Early voting is surging, as Americans try to avoid Election Day crowds because of concerns about the coronavirus pandemic.
Nationally, more than 10 million votes have been cast, as of Tuesday, according to data compiled by the U.S. Elections Project.
“Millions of Americans have already cast their ballots and with only 21 days until Election Day, making your plan to vote early is critical,” Michelle Obama, wife of Democratic former President Barack Obama, said in a statement. “We can’t leave anyone behind.”
Her group will provide $1 million in grants and supplies to local partner organizations for the effort, according to the statement.
Some of the events will take place in cities in closely contested states, including Atlanta, Georgia; Charlotte, North Carolina; Detroit, Michigan; Milwaukee, Wisconsin; Orlando, Florida; and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Georgia is among states that opened early voting locations this week, with some people waiting for hours in long lines to cast their ballots.
“More Than A Vote,” which is headlined by James, features countless athletes and celebrities working together to get people to the polls in a safe manner.
“Our priority right now is combating systemic, racist voter suppression by educating, energizing, and protecting our community in 2020,” its mission statement read.