Political news

Martin O'Malley, former governor of Maryland, says he'll decide by late May whether he's running for president. Running would put him — even he seems to acknowledge — in an uphill battle against Hillary Clinton, currently the only Democrat who has declared.

O'Malley is positioning himself to Clinton's left, and even President Obama's left.

Kodel / Flickr

  Bill Kempker always has his helmet on when riding a motorcycle. It is required by Missouri law that all the motorcyclists on the state highway wear a helmet. But once he leaves Missouri and travels through states like Arkansas, where wearing helmet is an option instead of requirement, he would take the helmet off. But Kempker and other motorcyclists might be able to do that in Missouri soon. The Missouri House on Monday approved the bill HB 523 by a vote of 97-57. The bill would allow riders who are at least 21 years old to go without helmets.

Flickr user Rona Proudfoot

On Sunday Hillary Clinton sent a tweet and posted a YouTube video announcing her candidacy for president. What is Clinton's campaign doing differently this time around? Missouri School of Journalism professors Amy Simons, Earnest Perry and Mike McKean discuss the issue on the weekly media criticism program, "Views of the News." 

For more, follow Views of the News on  Facebook ,  Twitter, and  YouTube.    

Legislation that would reduce lifetime eligibility for most welfare recipients in Missouri is on its way to Gov. Jay Nixon's desk.

An earlier version of the bill would have cut lifetime eligibility for Temporary Assistance to Needy Families, or TANF, in half, from 5 years to two and 1/2.  But a compromise between the House and Senate reduces that period to 3 years and 9 months.

jcarlosn / Flickr

A proposal to raise Missouri's fuel tax for the first time in two decades appears unlikely to move forward this session despite warnings from transportation officials about the future of the state's infrastructure. 

Nearly a million people will line the streets to watch the Boston Marathon on Monday, and someone else will be watching them. Bill Ridge with the Boston Police says video surveillance is a big part of the security plan.

"We've got a lot of cameras out there," he says. "We're going to be watching the portions in Boston — particularly the routes along Boylston Street, the finish line."

Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster has maintained a large financial lead in his 2016 quest for governor, despite new self-imposed rules that prompted him to return $45,000 in donations.

Koster, a Democrat, reported over $3.2 million in the bank in his latest campaign filings, due Wednesday.

school buses
Twix / Flickr

The Missouri Senate is sending back to the House a measure that supporters say will address problems with the state's flawed student transfer law. 

Missouri Capitol
David Shane / Flickr

One of the state’s most aggressive groups when it comes to recording Missouri Senate hearings has had enough with some senators saying no.

Here's a question for you last-minute tax filers. See that little checkoff box at the top of the 1040 tax form, the one labeled "Presidential Election Campaign"? You didn't check it, did you?

If not, then you're just like pretty much everybody else.

Courtesy NBC

Remember NBC’s franchise, “To Catch a Predator?” Chris Hansen does, and he hopes you do, too. The former network investigative reporter is launching a Kickstarter campaign to revive the one-time hit. If he’s successful in raising $400,000, his new program “Hansen vs. Predator” will run online while Hansen tries to sell it to a network.

images_of_money / flickr

  A new audit claims Missouri owes the federal government $34 million for not complying with Medicaid regulations.

A U.S. Department of Health and Human Services audit set for release Tuesday shows Missouri didn't bill drug manufacturers for rebates.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that meant drug companies kept more money while there was less for Medicaid recipients.

The Missouri Department of Social Services oversees the program and says it disagrees with the audit.

A department spokeswoman says the amount owed is closer to $7 million.

It's been a year since Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy and his militia supporters stood down federal agents with the Bureau of Land Management outside Las Vegas.

Bundy owes more than $1 million in delinquent cattle grazing fees and penalties, but the BLM has stayed quiet in the year since the showdown, and Bundy's supporters marked the anniversary by throwing a party.

j. stephenconn / Flickr

Missouri's GOP-controlled Legislature is using its clout to push for limits to the state's social safety net.

Proposals nearing the end of the legislative process include a measure to tie the amount of time available for individuals to receive unemployment benefits to the state unemployment rate. Instead of the current 20 weeks, people could receive as little as 13 weeks of benefits.

When the former senator, secretary of state and first lady announced for president on Sunday she smiled into the camera and said, "I'm Hillary Clinton."

Those who were hoping for a return of Hillary's family name, "Rodham," as part of her public identity might have felt some disappointment. For many of her admirers, Hillary Rodham Clinton was the embodiment of aspiration for a woman in public life. This was the woman they wanted to elevate to the White House in her own right.

Marco Rubio, the charismatic, Hispanic, young (and even younger-looking) freshman senator from Florida is launching his campaign for the White House Monday in Miami.

Rubio, 43, will be entering a growing field of candidates. Right now, he's considered a second-tier candidate, polling behind Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, the man Rubio has called a mentor.

That could change once he gets in. Rubio's advisers believe he has a path to the nomination, with assets few other candidates can match.

via Flickr user Anthony Quintano

We are all C-SPAN now. Two new apps hit the market in the last few weeks that make it possible to live stream footage straight from your mobile phone, and share it through Twitter. Meerkat and Periscope are both free to download, and journalists are already starting to explore new ways to deliver content instantly. Missouri School of Journalism professors Amy Simons, Earnest Perry and Mike McKean discuss the issue on the weekly media criticism program, Views of the News. 

For more, follow Views of the News on  Facebook ,  Twitter, and  YouTube.  

The Future of Rolling Stone Discussed

Apr 11, 2015
Courtesy Rolling Stone

  A moment that will go down in journalism's history, the failure of Rolling Stone's article, "A Rape on Campus." Rolling Stone published its article last November, a story that depicted a brutal gang rape on University of Virginia student, "Jackie." The article resulted in a wave of controversy across the nation as factual errors began to arise. Missouri School of Journalism professors Amy Simons, Earnest Perry and Mike McKean discuss the issue on Views of the News and what's in store for Rolling Stone moving forward. 

j. stephenconn / Flickr

Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon says increased state general revenues make some proposed budget cuts unnecessary, specifically those for foster children and people with mental illnesses.

David Shane / Flickr

  An executive at the Missouri Cattlemen's Association says Republican state Sen. Mike Parson is running for governor in 2016.

Nixon Signs Two Agriculture Bills Into Law

Apr 10, 2015
Jacob Fenston / KBIA

  Gov. Jay Nixon on Friday signed into law two agriculture bills aimed at making it easier for farmers to do business in Missouri.

Nixon signed the bills at a ceremony in Barry County, which is located southwest of Springfield.

Stephen Webber Announces 2016 Run for State Senate

Apr 10, 2015
Stephen Webber
Kristofor Husted / KBIA

Democrat Stephen Webber announced Thursday he will be running for State Senate in the 2016 election. A former Marine, Webber is currently on his second term as a member of the Missouri House of Representatives.

Eighty municipal courts in St. Louis County have agreed to levy identical fines and court fees for charges like speeding or driving without insurance.

Legislation designed to aid some delinquent taxpayers in Missouri is on its way to Gov. Jay Nixon's desk.

The House on Thursday overwhelmingly passed HB 384, the "tax amnesty" bill, which would allow people behind on their state income taxes to pay them off without additional penalties or interest.

Ryan Famuliner / KBIA

A bill providing an additional $120 million dollars in general funds for the 2015 fiscal year is moving forward in the Missouri House.

In Missouri, two political suicides have stunned the Republican Party. In February, state Auditor Tom Schweich, a leading candidate for the party's nomination for governor, shot himself. Then just last month, his press secretary, Spence Jackson, took his own life. The tragedies have sparked fresh scrutiny of Missouri's increasingly bruising political system.

Schweich launched his campaign for governor with a scathing broadside against the state's Republican Party establishment.

  Who is to blame for the journalism malpractice at Rolling Stone? The reporter? The editors? The fact-checkers? Jackie? Columbia Journalism School’s report into to “A Rape On Campus” is out, and it’s scathing. From the Missouri School of Journalism professors Amy Simons, Earnest Perry and Mike McKean will talk about how it happened, why it happened and what can be done to prevent it from happening again.

j. stephenconn / Flickr

Missouri senators have narrowly passed a budget for state social services despite hours of late-night debate and filibusters.

The budget passed with the minimum 18 votes needed early Wednesday. Fifteen lawmakers voted against it.

In a first, the City Council in Ferguson, Mo., is now half white and half black, after voters added two more African-Americans to the six-member group. Voter turnout was reported at 30 percent in the majority-black community.

The voter turnout "surpasses recent municipal elections in Ferguson — and nearly doubles the roughly 16 percent turnout in the rest of St. Louis County," St. Louis Public Radio reports.

Betsy Peters Elected Sixth Ward Columbia Councilperson

Apr 8, 2015

In a tight Columbia city council race between Sixth ward candidates Betsy Peters and Ryan Euliss, Peters edged out Euliss by a mere 35 votes. Although the candidates ran on similar issues, like increasing the amount of safety personnel and improving infrastructure, they differed in their approach to representing the Sixth ward.

Euliss who took a city-wide approach said the issues that the Sixth Ward faces are similar to the Columbia’s as whole.