(R) Lane Roberts Running For A 2nd Term In Missouri’s 161st District

It’s Morning Editon on K R P S. In-person voting takes place on Tuesday November 3rd and this morning we continue our series, Chatting with the Candidates. This morning we focus on the 161st District in Southwest Missouri. Next hour we’ll hear from challenger and Democrat Joshua Shackles. But first, Republican candidate Lane Roberts who is running to earn his second term in the Missouri House of Representatives. I first asked Lane, like I do to all candidates, to introduce themselves to voters and what some of their priorities are this election season.  

Challenger (D)Joshua Shackles Looks To Unseat Republican Incumbent In Missouri’s 161st District

Joshua Shackles radio edited interview

It’s Morning Editon on K R P S. In-person voting takes place on Tuesday November 3rd and this morning we continue our series, Chatting with the Candidates. This morning we focus on the 161st District in Southwest Missouri. Next hour we’ll hear from incumbent Republican Lane Roberts, but first we hear from challenger Democrat Joshusa Shackles in his first bid to earn a seat in the Missouri House of Representatives. I first asked Josh, to introduce themselves to voters and what some of their priorities are this election season.  

New Podcast From KHN Focuses On The Closure of Mercy Hospital Fort Scott

A new podcast from K H N titled ‘Where It Hurts’ focuses on healthcare in rural America. The first season titled, ‘No Mercy’ was released in late September. The story is reported on by Southeast Kansas native Sarah Jane Tribble who grew up in Parsons, Kansas on a 10-acre farm that her parents still live on today.  ‘No Mercy’ tells the story of the Mercy hospital in Fort Scott, Kansas closing at the end of the 2018 and the lives it touched. I spoke with Sarah Jane Tribble last week, and she first tell us how she came to create the No Mercy podcast.  

Extended interview with reporter Sarah Jane Tribble
Radio edited interview with Sarah

You can hear the complete first season of ‘Where It Hurts’ on KRPS. Friday mornings at 9, and Friday evenings at 6:30. Or you can get it wherever you get your podcasts.  

Advocates Of ‘Yes on 3’ Say It Would Rid Missouri Of Gerrymandering

It’s Morning Edition on K R P S. Election day is nearing, and residents of Kansas have until next Tuesday, October 13th to register to vote, although this past Tuesday was the final day to register to vote in Missouri. Speaking of Missouri, for those of you who can vote, Amendment 3 is on the ballot. On Tuesday’s Morning Edition we heard from Campaign Director of the No on 3 campaign, this morning we hear from the Yes on 3 camp and the Eric Bohl, the Director of Public Affairs and Advocacy for the Missouri Farm Bureau. Eric recently wrote an op-ed in the Springfield Business Journal supporting Amendment 3. I reached him at his office on Wednesday in Columbia.  

Eric Bohl, the Director of Public Affairs and Advocacy for the Missouri Farm Bureau.

‘No On Amendment 3 ‘Advocates Say It Would Take Missouri Backwards

 The countdown is now at 27 days until the final day you can vote, in-person, on Tuesday, November 3rd. Democrats and Republicans aren’t the only thing on the ballot in Missouri this election season. Amendment 3 is also. Essentially, if passed, it would overturn must of Clean Missouri, as known as Amendment 1, that voters passed by a nearly 2 to 1 margin just two years ago. Proponents of Amendment 3 say it will rid the state of gerrymandating. On Monday, I spoke with the campaign director of the No on 3 campaign Sean Nicholson. I first asked Sean, if Amendment 3 passed on the November ballot, what it would mean for Missouri residents?   

Next week, we’ll hear from somebody from the Yes on 3 campaign, that believes the amendment should pass in Missouri.   

Advocates Of ‘No On 3’ Say It Would Reverse Clean Missouri of 2018

The aftermath of Clean Missouri, the amendment that voters overwhelmingly passed two years continues. K R P S’s Fred Fletcher-Fierro has more.   

Photo by Karolina Grabowska on Pexels.com

In 2018, Missouri voters, by nearly a 2 to 1 margin voting in favor of Amendment 1. The Lobbying Campaign Finance and Restricting Initiative, also known as Clean Missouri. The amendment was supposed to create two independent commissions that would help redraw legislative districts throughout Missouri to decrease gerrymandering. The aftermath on this year’s ballot is Amendment 3, which would eliminate the nonpartisan state demographer and revert to a bipartisan commission appointed by the governor. Campaign Manager for No on 3 Sean Nicholson speaks about who is backing the amendment. “Amendment 3 was crafted by politicians to let lobbyists and political operatives draw maps to protect their politicians. They want a world whereas few districts as possible are competitive in November” A yes vote on Amendment 3 would also change the threshold of lobbyist gifts by just $5 from $5 to $0 and lower the contribution limit for state senate campaigns $100 dollars from $2,500 to $2,400. Both Republicans and Democrats across the state have come out in opposition to Amendment 3. For K R P S, I’m Fred Fletcher-Fierro in Webb City 

(D) Lynn Grant Looks To Unseat Kansas Republican In District 2

There are 28 more days until the General Election on Tuesday, November 3rd. This morning we hear from both candidates running for Kansas’ House of Representative seat in District 2. Next hour we’ll hear from incumbent Republican Ken Collins, seeking his second term. But first, a newcomer to the ballot, sort of. You might recognize Lynn Grant’s last name, her husband Robert, who passed away in 2015; he held this seat for 17 years. I spoke with Lynn a few weeks ago in downtown Pittsburg. Both us wearing masks during the time of our in-person interview. I first asked him to Lynn to introduce herself to voters.   

(D) Lynn Grant radio edited interview
Grant extended edited interview

Lynn Grant is running for State Representative is District 2. You can learn more about her campaign at grantforkansas.com, she is also on Facebook.

(R)Rep. Ken Collins Seeks Reelection To Kansas House in 2nd District

In Kansas you still have two weeks to request a mail in ballot, the deadline is Tuesday, October 27th.  This morning we turn our attention to the Kansas House of Representatives and the 2nd District. Next hour we’ll hear from Democrat Lynn Grant. She is facing, Republican Ken Collins, who is seeking his second term. I spoke with Representative Collins last week at his convenience store in Mulberry, Kansas. Both of us were wearing masks for the duration of the in-person interview.  

Rep. Collins radio edited interview
Ken Collins web edited interview

Republican Ken Collins is running to earn his second term in Kansas’ House of Representatives in District 2. You can learn more about Ken’s campaign at his website, kenforkansas.net. He is also on Facebook. You can also hear the extended interview with Representative Collins at our news blog k r p s news dot com  

Missouri Governor Returns to Campaign Trail

Missouri Governor Mike Parson is back on the campaign trail after both me and his wife tested positive for the coronavirus last month. K R P S’s Fred Fletcher-Fierro has more.   

Photo by Edward Jenner on Pexels.com

Since the pandemic reached Missouri in February, Governor Parson has resisted issuing a statewide stay at home order or a statewide mask ordnance. This summer, Parson said in a radio interview with the Marc Cox show in Columbia that he wasn’t concerned about students getting the virus because quote, “they are going to go home and get over it.” Through the Governor’s Facebook account, Parson has continued to recommend that Missouri residents’ social distance, wear masks, and wash hands regularly. While previous to being diagnosed with COVID-19, Parson and wife Teresa were photographed on the campaign trail regularly, not social distancing, wearing masks, and shaking hands with likely voters. On Sunday, Parson and his wife were seen in a Facebook video at their farm in Boliver, saying he had been given a clean bill of health to return to work and his reelection campaign. For K R P S. I’m Fred Fletcher-Fierro in Webb City 

Missouri Continues To Struggle With Pandemic

Later this week, Missouri will likely surpass 2,200 COVID-19 related deaths since the first cases was reported in early February. K R P S’s Fred Fletcher-Fierro has more.   

Photo by Karolina Grabowska on Pexels.com

Missouri has averaged about 271 COVID-19 related deaths per month for the first 8 months of the pandemic. That’s according to the latest data from the Missouri Department of Health on Sunday. To put that into context, since last Friday when M D H last updated their website, for the previous week, 44 Missourians died of COVID-19 related symptoms. That number does not include deaths this past weekend. Another sign that Missouri continues to have difficulty coping with the pandemic is the states high positivity rate, which stands at 14 percent.  In comparison, according to data from John Hopkins University coronavirus resource center, New York state has a rolling 7-day average of 1-point 2 percent positivity rate. At one point in mid-April, the state reported an over 50 percent COVID-19 positive test rate. Meanwhile, Arkansas has about a 4 and 5 percent positivity rate, 10-percentage points lower than neighboring Missouri. For K R P S, I’m Fred Fletcher-Fierro in Webb City