Juana Summers

Juana Summers is a political reporter for NPR covering demographics and culture. She has covered politics since 2010 for publications including Politico, CNN and The Associated Press. She got her start in public radio at KBIA in Columbia, Mo., and also previously covered Congress for NPR.

She appears regularly on television and radio outlets to discuss national politics. In 2016, Summers was a fellow at Georgetown University's Institute of Politics and Public Service. Summers is also a competitive pinball player and sits on the board of the International Flipper Pinball Association (IFPA), the governing body for competitive pinball events around the world.

She is a graduate of the Missouri School of Journalism and a native of Kansas City, Mo.

Lizzie Bond was just shy of being old enough to vote in the 2016 presidential election.

She supported Texas Sen. Ted Cruz during the primary. But when Donald Trump became the Republican Party's presidential nominee, Bond made a different choice: She supported Hillary Clinton's campaign instead.

"You know, it was actually a harder decision to decide who I wanted to support within the lineup of Republican candidates than it was to decide whether to support Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton," said Bond, who is now 21 and a senior at Duke University.

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Last week's Republican National Convention offered direct appeals to a new generation of voters. It showcased figures like Madison Cawthorn, a congressional candidate in North Carolina.

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A couple of years before California Sen. Kamala Harris announced that she would run for president, she returned to Howard University to speak to the graduating class.

"First, to lead and to thrive, you must reject false choices. Howard taught me, as it has taught you, that you can do anything and you can do everything," Harris told the 2017 graduates.

After attending elementary school in Berkeley, Calif., and high school in Montreal, Harris decided on Howard and was focused on becoming a lawyer.

When she found out that former Vice President Joe Biden had selected Sen. Kamala Harris of California as his running mate, LaTosha Brown was in her bathroom trying on makeup.

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As the coronavirus pandemic has upended normal balloting, more than half of voters under the age of 35 say they don't have the resources or knowledge they need to vote by mail in November, according to a new poll.

The poll was conducted by Global Strategy Group for NextGen America, a group that is focused primarily on engaging and turning out young voters.

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President Trump has been making aggressive appeals to suburban voters lately. Many of these messages appear to be mostly targeting white voters, but the suburbs have been changing, and that could impact what happens in November. NPR's Juana Summers is here to explain.

When Timothy Berry decided to attend the U.S. Military Academy West Point, patriotism was one of his driving factors. He describes it as an active verb, not merely "a flag waving."

"I have always had a profound appreciation for what this country has said its ideals are," Berry said. "But being a Black American, in particular, one that served in uniform, I've quickly realized that there were just a lot of contradictions in there."

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The doors of Greater New Mount Moriah Missionary Baptist Church in Detroit have been closed for weeks.

The 95-year-old church's pews are empty. Ministry continues, with no in person presence. What Pastor Kenneth Flowers says he misses most are "holy hugs."

"When church is dismissed, I say, 'Give someone a holy hug and everyone turns and we always hug each other,' " Flowers said. "I thrive off of the physical contact of being able to hug my members, to hug my families, to hug my friends, to hug visitors. I miss that so very much."

Former Vice President Joe Biden's campaign has been facing pressure from Democratic operatives and activists, worried that his Latino outreach efforts are not enough and potentially a serious liability in the fall election.

Some say that his campaign, which is staffing up to improve those efforts, could learn lessons from the success of one of his former rivals.

Former President Barack Obama delivered a virtual commencement address on Saturday, urging the tens of thousands of graduates from historically black colleges and universities to "seize the initiative" amid what he described as a lack of leadership from leaders in the United States to the coronavirus pandemic.

Four years ago, Joe Biden took the stage at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia to the Rocky theme, looking out over a crowd of delegates waving red and white signs that bore his name. He encouraged fellow Democrats to unite and rally around Hillary Clinton.

Now, as Democrats plan to hold the convention that will nominate Biden, the chances that he'll bask in the same kind of scene this year seem ever more distant, as the Democratic Party faces the possibility of a limited in-person presence or virtual gathering.

Updated at 4:55 p.m. ET

Former New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg's presidential campaign will now pay health care costs for former staffers through November, after originally offering laid off workers coverage only through the end of April, according to an email from the campaign's human resources.

More than a quarter of the country's 18- to 29-year-olds say that their lives are worse because of President Trump, according to a new poll, the latest to show the motivating impact the president could have on the youngest subset of voters this election year.

The poll, by Harvard's Institute of Politics, found that 29% of that cohort say their lives are worse under President Trump's leadership, 39% say their lives are no different, and 15% say their lives are better.

Updated at 7:54 p.m. ET

If China was responsible for the coronavirus outbreak, the country should face consequences, President Trump said at Saturday's White House briefing.

"If it was a mistake, a mistake is a mistake," Trump said in response to a reporter's question. "But if they were knowingly responsible, yeah, I mean, then sure there should be consequences."

Trump has offered no evidence that the Chinese were responsible for the pandemic, but did say that a U.S. investigation into the outbreak is ongoing.

On a recent Saturday night, tens of thousands of people joined a nine-hour virtual dance party on Instagram Live that was hosted by DJ D-Nice. Some familiar big names have been dropping into what he calls "Club Quarantine," like John Legend, Joe Biden and Mark Zuckerberg.

But it was the appearance of former first lady Michelle Obama that seemed to have a big impact.

"Oh my gosh. Michelle Obama's in here," D-Nice exclaimed as Obama's appearance brought the music to a brief stop. "Yo, I swear, I don't even know who to play right now. My mind's completely blown."

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Updated at 12:02 p.m. ET

Former President Barack Obama officially endorsed his former vice president, Joe Biden, on Tuesday, marking the Democratic establishment's formal consolidation around the party's presumptive presidential nominee.

When Amol Jethwani interviewed for a job on Mike Bloomberg's presidential campaign in December, the benefits were unlike anything he had heard of for political campaign field workers.

"They offered an incredible benefits package, which is unheard of for field staff, offering $8,000 a month for a regional role in addition to health care, technology, laptops, cellphones," said Jethwani.

Former campaign workers for Mike Bloomberg's presidential campaign have filed two separate proposed class-action lawsuits, alleging that the thousands of staffers laid off this month had been promised to be paid through the general election in November.

One lawsuit, filed by Donna Wood, a former field organizer for Bloomberg's campaign in Florida, alleges that the campaign misled employees, recruiting them to work for Bloomberg under false pretenses and had failed to pay the necessary overtime. The lawsuit was filed in federal court in New York City.

Brianna Wu is hoping for an upset.

The software engineer is looking to challenge incumbent Rep. Stephen Lynch (D-Mass.) for a second time. But, before that, she has to get on the ballot for September's primary.

For congressional candidates like Wu, that means collecting 2,000 signatures, no large number. But with in-person contact several limited by the coronavirus outbreak, even that feels impossible now.

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According to Senator Bernie Sanders, he should win the Democratic nomination because he'll bring millions of non-voters to the polls in November, especially young people. But the turnout rate for young voters continues to be far lower than the turnout rate overall.

The revolution that Bernie Sanders is promising depends on a new wave of young voters showing up at the polls to propel his campaign. But this week, the Vermont senator acknowledged that those voters, on which his success to some degree hinges, have not shown up in the way he'd hoped.

After 14 states held primary contests on Super Tuesday, Sanders acknowledged to reporters that he'd been "disappointed" with the results.

Former Vice President Joe Biden went on a romp across the South on Tuesday, winning over several states with large majorities of African Americans. Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders won the largest state on the Super Tuesday map, California, where Latinos make up about a third of the Democratic electorate.

All told, the 14 states that voted Tuesday offer the clearest distillation yet of the two distinct paths that Sanders and Biden would take to build a winning Democratic coalition to defeat President Trump in November.

Updated at 9:36 p.m. ET

Tom Steyer, the billionaire hedge fund investor and environmental activist who staked his campaign on a strong finish in South Carolina, suspended his presidential campaign on Saturday.

Steyer aggressively courted the black vote in the state, with a focus on racial and economic justice but had a disappointing finish. Former Vice President Joe Biden was projected to win the state.

Democratic presidential hopefuls have stepped up their criticism of President Trump's handling of the coronavirus, accusing his administration of "incompetence."

The president has noticed. Speaking to supporters Friday night in South Carolina, he accused his Democratic rivals of using the virus for political ends.

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