Elections | KCUR

Elections

Michelle Tyrene Johnson / KCUR 89.3

Former Kansas City Councilwoman and mayoral candidate Alissia Canady has filed to run for Missouri Lieutenant Governor.

Canady served one term representing the city’s 5th district before announcing her mayoral bid in 2018.

Nomin Ujiyediin / Kansas News Service

Republican U.S. Sen. Pat Roberts says he will not run for re-election in 2020, opening the door to a parade of candidates announcing a run or considering jumping into the race to replace him. Multiple Republicans are eyeing the seat, and it could be the first time Democrats have a competitive U.S. Senate primary since the 1990s.

Here’s the rundown of who’s seeking the seat in Washington: 

Elle Moxley / KCUR 89.3

Missouri has postponed April municipal elections until June, a decision that could have a long-term impact on metro school districts asking voters to approve bonds for construction projects.

North Kansas City Schools, the state’s third largest school district, needs to replace two elementary schools, build an early childhood center and add on to Staley High School. There’s also a backlog of deferred maintenance at the district’s oldest school buildings. 

Missouri Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft says lawmakers would be amenable to passing election legislation aimed at responding to coronavirus fears — after municipal elections were moved recently from April to June.

What changes would actually be made is still under discussion. Some ideas include broadening the use of absentee ballots and implementing a vote-by-mail program.

Photo illustration by Elle Moxley

After several tumultuous years during which the school district’s first black superintendent abruptly resigned, Lee’s Summit voters will again be electing new school board members this April. 

Aviva Okeson-Haberman / KCUR 89.3

Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas made national headlines Tuesday when he tried to vote in Missouri’s presidential primary but was incorrectly told by an election worker that he wasn’t in the system.

Lucas initially attempted to vote on Tuesday morning using a utility bill as his identification, which is acceptable under Missouri law. He was eventually able to vote Tuesday evening using his passport as identification. He said his experience was part of a larger issue with voting and called on Missouri to increase funding for elections and offer mail-in voting.

Aviva Okeson-Haberman / KCUR 89.3

Former Vice President Joe Biden defeated Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders 60% to 34% in the Missouri Democratic presidential primary.

Both campaigns made stops in Missouri ahead of Tuesday's vote. At a rally in St. Louis, Sanders pitched himself as a more progressive candidate who would push for expanding health care to every American and pass gun control measures. Biden made the case at a rally in Kansas City that he could unite the party and bring in Republican voters.

Photo illustration by Bigstock and Kathy Lu

You know about what matters as you’re finding your way through the election season and making decisions on how to fill out your ballot, and KCUR wants to hear from you as we shape our Election 2020 coverage.

We learned a lot of lessons during the 2016 election season, most notably that we need to do more listening and hear from more diverse voices. And, we need to make it easier for you to connect with us.

Less than a week before the Missouri preisdential primaries, on the day that the Democratic field narrowed to a final two candidates, Kansas City area voters under 25 years old shared their journeys watching the process unfold so far. What are the issues that matter to them the most, and why? What do the candidates look like through that lens? Our roundtable includes two democrats, one republican, and two unaffiliated voters. A political science professor adds context to the young people's stories at the end of the hour.

Guests:

KCUR file photo / KCUR 89.3

Updated at 10 a.m. March 4 — As the race for the Democratic presidential nominee narrows, Missouri voters will weigh in on Tuesday with their preference. 

While most of the attention is focused on the heated Democratic primary, voters can choose to cast a ballot for the Republican, Libertarian, Green or Constitution party nominee. Here’s what you need to know about your vote. 

Segment 1: UMKC political science professors give us a lesson in what socialism is, and what it isn't.

With a democratic frontrunner who doesn't shy away from being labeled a socialist, the need to understand the term (and its baggage in US politics) is more crucial than ever. We start with the basics and take it from there.

The two top candidates for Missouri governor signed up to run in their party’s respective primaries on Tuesday, and spent their first moments as official candidates diverging on a ballot item to expand Medicaid.

Gov. Mike Parson and state Auditor Nicole Galloway’s entry into the 2020 gubernatorial contest came as scores of other congressional, statewide and legislative candidates traveled to Jefferson City to file for office.

Segment 1: Can trust in the American electoral system be restored?

As the 2020 election season takes shape, the fairness and security of our electoral systems are being questioned by regular voters, politicians and the intelligence community alike. From voter supression to foreign influence campaigns, we get a threat assessment for electoral integrity in the U.S.

Absentee voting is already underway for Missouri’s presidential primary on March 10.

But it’s unclear how much attention the primary will receive from candidates or voters. Or how important Missouri’s votes will be in choosing the two major parties’ nominees.

Would-be voters in Missouri have until Feb. 12 to register.

Segment 1: A Kansas native moderated the last Democratic debate in Iowa.

Brianne Pfannenstiel grew up in Lawrence and got her first job in journalism at the Kansas City Star. Now that she's in a state with a huge voice in this year's election, we wanted to know: How does she feel the Midwest is represented in national discourse today? What does she think of Iowa's role specifically? And, what is it like to moderate a national debate?

Segment 1: Test scores for Kansas City, Kansas Public Schools improved last year.

Kansas City, Kansas Public Schools saw last year's test scores jump at least four percentage points from the 2017-18 school year. Today, the superintendent explains his strategies for continued success, and details the work still left to do.

Segment 1: Will young voters hold their momentum in 2020?

The youth vote made a difference in the 2018 midterms in Kansas, as well as nationwide. Turnout was way up from 2014. As 2020 elections get closer, what are experts predicting now?

Michelle Tyrene Johnson / KCUR 89.3

If you’re wondering when the streets of Paseo Boulevard that have Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard signs will become Paseo once more, you may be waiting a while.

Segment 1: Why Iowa holds the first caucuses in the country, and what their results mean for each political party.

Advertising guidelines and an agriculture convention landed Iowa in the No. 1 spot in the country's presidential primary process. One political science professor said, for Republicans the caucuses show who will not be president, and, since 2000, the Democrat who won Iowa has gone on to be the presidential nominee.

Andrea Tudhope / KCUR 89.3 file photo

Johnson County's top election official, Ronnie Metsker, is resigning just over a year after former Secretary of State Kris Kobach appointed him to a new four-year term. 

Kansas Secretary of State Scott Schwab announced the resignation in a statement, but did not say why Metsker is stepping down. All requests for comment from Metsker were directed to the secretary of state's office.

Element5 Digital / Unsplash

Democrats in Virginia claimed big wins in the Tuesday election, fueled in no small part by big investments from gun control advocates.

The historic blue wave marked the first time Democrats seized control of the state’s government in a generation.

Segment 1: The former U.S. Senator from Missouri says, "traditional qualifications for president are on life support."

Segment 1: Kansas City voters revert Martin Luther King Boulevard back to its previous name, Paseo.

The morning after  Martin Luther King's name was voted off of a major boulevard, we analyze what the controversy and its outcome mean for Kansas City communities. Plus, how this all looks through a national lens.

Stephen Koranda / Kansas News Service

TOPEKA, Kansas — Kansas will now have a streamlined census that counts people only where they’re living after voters decided Tuesday to end the practice of adjusting the numbers before state legislative districts are drawn up.

Bigstock Images

On November 5, voters in Kansas City, Missouri, chose to reverse the city council's decision to rename Paseo Boulevard after Martin Luther King, Jr. and filled two open seats in the Missouri House with Democrats. In Kansas, Wyandotte County voters largely re-elected incumbents with one notable exception.

Segment 1: The Unified Government's chief executive discusses violent crime, economic development and local elections.

Aviva Okeson-Haberman / KCUR 89.3

Tuesday’s election includes races for two Kansas City-area Missouri House seats that were vacated earlier this year. 

The 22nd  District House seat came open after Democratic Rep. Brandon Ellington resigned to serve on the city council, while the 36th District House seat is open because Democratic Rep. DaRon McGee stepped down amid sexual harassment allegations.

KCUR interviewed candidates for both seats. These interviews have been edited for length and clarity.

Avery Gott

The Johnson County Community College Board of Trustees race, which is non-partisan and typically quiet, has been highly contentious this year. Six candidates, including two incumbents, are running for three open spots on the board of the $150 million community college.

Student enrollment is trending down due to low unemployment in the county, leading the school to rely on income from property taxes for 65% of its budget.

Avery Gott / KCUR 89.3

Voters throughout Kansas City, Missouri, are being asked to decide whether to reverse a city council decision from earlier this year and change the name of what is now Dr. Martin Luther King Boulevard back to Paseo Boulevard.

BigStock Images

Voters in Wyandotte County will decide on Nov. 5 whether they want to see a change of hands on the Unified Government Board of Commissioners. 

In this election, voters will select commissioners, representatives for the Board of Public Utilities and board members of USD 500 Kansas City, Kansas, public schools. Early voting starts Saturday.

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