Kansas Reflector Podcast

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Kansas Reflector Podcast

The Kansas Reflector Podcast, hosted by senior reporter Tim Carpenter, presents voices from the people and politics of Kansas.

Voices from the Frito-Lay picket line in Topeka

HOSTED BY: - July 19, 2021

Since July 5, more than 500 workers on strike have been posted across from a Frito-Lay plant in Topeka demanding higher wages and more limited hours. Union members rejected a contract offer from Frito-Lay with an annual 2% wage increase because for many workers that would be less than 50 cents per hour. Additionally, many […]

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Former Gov. Jeff Colyer, who is seeking the 2022 GOP nomination for governor, faulted former Democratic Gov. Kathleen Sebelius for suggesting people unvaccinated for COVID-19 ought to have access limited to workplaces or where people vulnerable to the virus could be found. (Tim Carpenter/Kansas Reflector)

Jeff Colyer campaigns for Kansas governor

HOSTED BY: and - July 12, 2021

In 2018, Republican Jeff Colyer fell 172 votes short of beating Kris Kobach in the closest statewide GOP primary election in Kansas history. He is confident he would have beaten Gov. Laura Kelly, a Democrat seeking re-election in 2022. Now Colyer is competing against Attorney General Derek Schmidt in the Republican gubernatorial primary for the […]

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The riverkeeper’s appreciation for the Kaw

HOSTED BY: - July 5, 2021

The Kansas River, or the Kaw, as some say, is a little-known treasure to most Kansans. Riverkeeper Dawn Buehler — advocate, scientist, educator and investigator — speaks to the environmental importance and recreational opportunities offered by this waterway. Read more about one of Kansas’ last wild places.

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Political scientists examine mass exodus from Legislature since 2010

HOSTED BY: - June 28, 2021

In 2010, the Capitol in Topeka was abuzz with 125 representatives and 40 senators eager to take on the state’s political challenges. This 165-person group included Sen. Laura Kelly, now the governor, and Sen. Jeff Colyer, who made it to the governor’s office a step ahead of her. Another half-dozen or so individuals moved on […]

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What the Kids Count report means for Kansas

HOSTED BY: and - June 21, 2021

Advocates worry a decade of progress improving the lives of Kansas children could be undermined by COVID-19 if policymakers can’t sustain recovery from the pandemic. Even before COVID-19 infected the world, Kansas trailed more than 20 states in terms of child well-being based on a series of metrics tracked annually by the Annie E. Casey […]

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Food insecurity in southwest Kansas

HOSTED BY: - June 15, 2021

A new report by the Kansas Appleseed Center for Law and Justice is re-examining barriers to food access faced by many southwest Kansans. For example, participation in the the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program has decreased even though the need has increased in Stevens, Seward, Grant, Ford, and Finney counties. Jami Reever, executive director of the […]

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A sneak peak at the Kansas Capitol tour, reopening June 14

HOSTED BY: - June 7, 2021

Most years, the Kansas Capitol would attract more than 6,500 visitors to see the state history contained there. But with a pandemic raging last year, activity grinded to a halt. Now, the Kansas Historical Society plans to reopen the Statehouse for tours on June 14. Joe Brentano, the Capitol Visitor’s Center coordinator, has given these […]

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Matt Lindsey, center facing, president of the Kansas Independent College Association, said the 20 accredited institutions in the organization proved to be a magnet for students during the COVID-19 pandemic. (Submitted/Kansas Reflector)

A tour of Kansas’ independent colleges

HOSTED BY: - May 31, 2021

Scattered across Kansas are an assortment of private colleges ranging in size from 300 to 3,600 students. That list includes Baker and Friends universities, Benedictine and Bethany colleges, MidAmerica Nazarene, McPherson College, University of St. Mary and others. What do they all have in common? They’re part of the Kansas Independent College Association. Joining the […]

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Republican state Rep. Steven Johnson, an Assaria farmer running for the GOP nomination for state treasurer, is officially alone in the GOP race but expects the field to expand. (Screen capture/Kansas Reflector)

Rep. Steven Johnson: Candidate for state treasurer

HOSTED BY: and - May 24, 2021

Kansas voters thought they gained some distance between politicians and all those ads, mailers and speeches during the 2020 election cycle. Not so fast! The 2022 campaign season upon us and fans of the electoral process can expect competitive races for governor, attorney general, the U.S. House and state treasurer. Senior reporter Tim Carpenter is joined on […]

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KDHE secretary Lee Norman update on Kansas health amid COVID-19

HOSTED BY: - May 17, 2021

On Saturday, March 7, 2020, at the Capitol, Lee Norman confirmed the unsettling but inevitable news that Kansas had its first case of the novel coronavirus. Since then, more than 311,000 Kansans have been infected. Overall, more than 5000 infected Kansans have died. Norman, secretary of the Kansas Department of Health and Environment, has been […]

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Veto session: Business relief, taxes and medical marijuana

HOSTED BY: , , and - May 10, 2021

After four months of the legislative session, the Kansas Legislature reached bedrock and key areas of public policy. The evidence emerges in the most simplistic forms in the snappy yes or no votes of bills and amendment resolutions, and also in poignant and sometimes lengthy speeches on the House and Senate floors. Senior reporter Tim […]

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House Majority Leader Dan Hawkins, House Speaker Ron Ryckman and House Speaker Pro Tem Blaine Finch, left to right, return to Topeka on Monday to grapple with Gov. Laura Kelly's vetoes and a series of unfinished bills. (Noah Taborda/Kansas Reflector)

The agenda for veto session at the Kansas Statehouse

HOSTED BY: and - May 3, 2021

The Republican-dominated Kansas Legislature covered Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly’s desk with a pile of bills that turned out to include an unusual amount of veto bait. In all, she vetoed eight bills and line-item vetoed more than a dozen provisions of a massive budget bill. House and Senate Republicans are licking their chops. They say […]

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