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KCUR Politics & Government


News about politics and government from KCUR.

News about politics and government from KCUR.
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Kansas City, MO




News about politics and government from KCUR.






4825 Troost Ave, Ste 202 Kansas City, Missouri 64110 (816) 235-1551


Welfare Remade Under Brownback, But Still Debated

If nothing else, Sam Brownback has marked his time as governor of Kansas with one bold approach after the next. And few remade the status quo as much as his approach to welfare. That sprung from his belief that even a well-meaning government that fails to prod the poor toward self-reliance ends up creating more dependency and stubborn poverty. Like his record on such issues as game-shifting tax cuts, the results are arguably mixed.

Duration: 00:04:31

So What Now? Missouri Lawmakers Chart A Path Forward

Missouri government is still reeling after a week that saw the State of the State address overshadowed by a report by KMOV in St. Louis that Governor Eric Greitens, a Republican, had an affair with an unnamed woman, as revealed in tapes secretly recorded by the woman's former husband. The governor has admitted the affair but denies allegations he attempted to blackmail the woman to keep it quiet. With many legislators calling for investigation or resignation, this week we ask what comes...

Duration: 00:31:45

Brownback Proposes School Spending Boost But No Tax Increase, Lawmakers Roll Eyes

Gov. Sam Brownback, poised to leave Kansas after a generation of dominating its politics, on Tuesday called for steep infusions of money into public schools — spurring fellow Republicans to accuse him of raising hopes with a “fairy tale.” Brownback said the state can add $600 million over the next five years — without a tax hike.

Duration: 00:04:18

Loyal Opposition: Democrats Name Ethics, Education As Top Priorities

It's a Republican season in the Missouri General Assembly. The GOP controls the House and Senate with veto-proof majorities, and Republican Governor Eric Greitens is working hard to advance a conservative agenda. But Democrats press on, seeking to influence legislation where they can and, sometimes, taking their case directly to the people. In this episode of Statehouse Blend Missouri, the House Democratic leader names her priorities for the year ahead — the last year of her term. Rep....

Duration: 00:34:25

Kansas City Police Baffled By Rise In Deadly Traffic Accidents

We’ve heard a lot about the soaring number of murders in Kansas City, a big problem to be sure. But police are also dealing with a huge spike in traffic fatalities. And as the year comes to an end, police aren’t really sure why there have been so many.

Duration: 00:04:37

Desperate To Stop Gun Violence, Westport Pushes For Private Sidewalks

Westport has seen a major uptick in gun violence this year. According to stats collected by the Westport Regional Business League, there were 16 gun-related weapons offenses in the district in 2016. In 2017, there were 65 — and that's only through Oct. 31. A Missouri law that took effect in January allows people to carry guns without a permit in nearly every public space, so there’s not much business owners or police can do to keep guns out. A coalition of Westport business owners are...

Duration: 00:05:14

New DCF Leader Prioritizes Accountability In Kansas Child Welfare System

The new secretary of the Kansas Department for Children and Families has come in promising a thorough review of the agency, staffing changes and more accountability following allegations and outrage about problems in the state’s foster care system.

Duration: 00:04:23

Even After Tax Hikes, Kansas Budget ‘Fix’ Remains Elusive

After wrestling to balance the budget for years, Kansas lawmakers bit the bullet this spring and agreed to undo many of Gov. Sam Brownback’s signature 2012 tax cuts. The question now is whether they have done enough to fix the state budget, as many promised to do in the 2016 campaign. Lawmakers will get a better idea of the state’s financial situation later this week when the consensus revenue estimating group determines whether revenues are tracking with projections. Kansas lawmakers...

Duration: 00:04:33

Making Money Appear: After Veto, What's Next For Disabled Care In Missouri?

Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens vetoed six bills passed by the Missouri General Assembly this year, and this week the legislators had their annual chance to override those vetoes and get their way anyway. In the end, the number of vetoes they overrode was ... zero. But one of those sustained vetos—of funding for in-home and nursing care for 8,000 disabled Missourians—left lawmakers still searching for a way to pay for care that everyone seems to agree is needed. House and Senate leaders tasked...

Duration: 00:18:51

Selection Committee Picks Edgemoor To Build New Single-Terminal KCI

After weeks of deliberation, Kansas City officials have recommended Maryland-based Edgemoor Infrastructure & Real Estate to design, build and finance a new, single terminal at Kansas City International Airport.

Duration: 00:03:55

What Happened To Funding For Senior And Disabled Missourians?

Why are thousands of Missourians losing state funding for nursing home or in-home health care this week? On this episode, we discuss how that funding was salvaged—and then lost again. And one legislator shares her ideas for how to get it back. Subscribe to Statehouse Blend Missouri, and stay up to date with the latest news from the Missouri General Assembly: Apple Podcasts , Google Play , and on the NPRone app . Guests: Rep. Deb Lavender , D-Kirkwood , Missouri General Assembly Jason...

Duration: 00:18:16

At The Kansas Governor's Mansion, Confusion Lingers Over Concealed Carry

After four years of planning for concealed carry in Kansas government buildings, you might expect that officials would have the wrinkles ironed out -- that they would have considered all the possibilities. But there is still confusion, and it starts at Cedar Crest, the stately governor’s mansion on the west side of Topeka.

Duration: 00:05:31

Kansas City Is Voting On Multiple Streetcar Issues — Whatever Happens, Brace For A Fight

In the coming days, Kansas City will find out whether a small group of voters approved a special taxing district for a southern streetcar extension. Right now, the streetcar starts at the City Market and runs about two miles south. Whether the streetcar goes any farther, in part, lies in the hands of 5,752 Kansas City residents.

Duration: 00:04:55

Brownback Reflects On Legacy In Kansas, Sees Urgent Work Ahead As Religious Ambassador

Gov. Sam Brownback on Thursday touted his credentials and passion for helping the Trump administration mitigate religious persecution around the globe. The prospective ambassador-at-large for international religious freedom said he does not know how long it might take for the U.S. Senate to consider his nomination by President Donald Trump, and he hasn’t yet decided when to turn over the reins to his lieutenant governor, Jeff Colyer. In a 35-minute Statehouse news conference, Brownback...

Duration: 00:04:25

Missouri's Abortion Debate And The Special Session

The Missouri Senate is scheduled to debate a bill this week that would add new regulations for clinics providing abortions. Its supporters, including Gov. Eric Greitens, say these will protect the health and safety of Missouri women, but abortion rights advocates say the legislation is designed to deny access to safe and legal abortion. We talk with both sides about this bill and how the abortion debate plays out in Missouri, year after year. Subscribe to Statehouse Blend Missouri, and...

Duration: 00:38:03

Farmers Unfazed By End Of Kansas Income Tax Exemption

Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback’s prized income tax exemption for businesses is gone. Over the governor’s veto , in June lawmakers raised income tax rates and repealed the exemption that had benefited roughly 330,000 business owners, including about 53,000 farmers. Farmers and other small business owners who’ve had a tax break for the past four years will now have to pay taxes on their non-wage income, including profits from farming. In his veto message , Brownback predicted the reversal of his...

Duration: 00:04:09

Extra Shot: Greitens Cuts Higher Education Funding, Tax Credits For Seniors

Governor Eric Greitens had a busy afternoon last Friday, June 30. He signed a major change to employment law, making it much harder for a fired employee to prove a discrimination case. He vetoed a bipartisan compromise that would have preserved a tax credit for low-income seniors and disabled people. And he signed the state budget—while also withholding more than $250 million in spending. Host Brian Ellison talks with KCUR's Kyle Palmer to catch you up on the political news of the weekend...

Duration: 00:05:55

Kansans With Disabilities Fearful Of Obamacare Replacement Bill

Editor’s note: This story was updated at 3:10 p.m. June 27. Disability rights advocates are among the strongest opponents of the Obamacare replacement legislation that Republicans are attempting to push through Congress. If anything resembling the bill that the U.S. House approved in May or the one the Senate is considering passes, they say it will roll back decades of progress. Both bills propose Medicaid cuts approaching $1 trillion over 10 years. Cuts of that magnitude, they say, would...

Duration: 00:04:24

A Not-So-Extraordinary Session

Back in February, St. Louis passed a law that some say placed too many restrictions on anti-abortion crisis pregnancy centers. In April, a federal judge struck down many of Missouri's restrictive regulations on abortion clinics. And last week, Gov. Eric Greitens called lawmakers back for an "extraordinary session" to pass a bill in response to all of that. But these two lawmakers think the session, and the reasons for it, aren't so extraordinary. We consider the legislation approved by the...

Duration: 00:31:32

How The New Women's Caucus Helped Shape A Tax Compromise

For awhile, it seemed as though it would be a long time before Kansas lawmakers came up with a tax plan that could pass. Just when it seemed the impass was at it's worst, The Women's Caucus stepped up with a plan that led to a compromise. Guests: Stephanie Clayton , R-Overland Park, Kansas House of Representatives Cindy Holscher , D-Olathe, Kansas House of Representatives Monica Murnan , D-Pittsburg, Kansas House of Representatives Subscribe to Statehouse Blend Kansas, and stay up to date...

Duration: 00:24:22

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