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Seg. 1: DC Lobbyists Help Congress Consider Kansas City Companies. Seg. 2: Ron Elving & Ken Rudin.

Ben Schumin
Wikimedia Commons
K Street in Washington has long been known as a center for the lobbying industry, think tanks and advocacy groups.

Segment 1: Are lobbyists the secret to keeping local companies competitive?

Ask a typical voter how they regard lobbyists, and you might get a wrinkled nose and a response suggesting lobbyists represent everything wrong with American politics. But can a case be made that lobbyists actually add value to a political system overrun with people trying to influence elected officials one way or another? As we continue our visit to NPR Headquarters in Washington, we met a pair of lobbyists who troll congressional hallways to get their perspective on what lobbyists actually do.

Segment 2, beginning at 23:05: Political perspectives on the 2018 midterm and beyond.

We’re less than a month from a critical set of midterm elections, and then, in an instant, the talk will turn to 2020 and this nation’s next presidential election. We took a look at where Missouri's U.S. Senate race stands, snuck a peek at the Kansas gubernatorial election, and looked ahead at who the Democrats might put up to face Donald Trump (presumably) in 2020.

Steve Kraske is the host of KCUR's Up To Date. Follow him on Twitter @stevekraske.
Luke X. Martin is a reporter focusing on race, culture and ethnicity for KCUR 89.3. Contact him at or on Twitter, @lukexmartin.