HPPR Government & Politics

Government:
state government (executive, legislative & judicial)
local government (city & county)
regional agencies & authorities
policies
budgets & taxes
laws, rules & regulations

Politics:
district-level and statewide office campaigns
legislative proposals
voting patterns

ABC News

A representative of the Texas separatist movement recently visited Moscow to attend a conference funded by the Kremlin, reports ABC News.

news9.com

Oklahoma is one of several states challenging President Barack Obama's plan that would force coal plants to reduce emissions,

Kansas City Star

Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach has gained national attention trying to ensure that voters who failed to show proof of citizenship should not be allowed to vote. Almost 18,000 voters in the state have registered without showing such documentation. And now, as The Kansas City Star reports, a Shawnee County judge has said those registered voter’s ballots will count in November’s election.

Mark Makela / Getty Images

Drive out into the countryside beyond any major US city, and Donald Trump signs abound. But, notes U.S. News and World Report, you’ll be hard-pressed to find much support for Hillary Clinton.

AP photo

Is it possible that tweaking a 21-year-old law could add millions of voters to the rolls?

Five states, including California, now automatically register voters when they sign up for a driver’s license. But many others, like Texas, make the process rather difficult.

Thad Allton / Topeka Capital-Journal

Just how much is the Kansas budget crisis hurting individual Kansans? According to a recent report, every Kansas taxpayer carries a $6,500-a-person tax burden. By comparison Nebraska, Kansas’s neighbor to the north, which did not slash taxes, boasts a surplus of $3,500 per taxpayer.

Emily Wendler / Oklahoma Public Media Exchange

Donald Trump is set to win Oklahoma’s seven electoral votes this November, reports KGOU.

His victory is being predicted despite widespread voter ambivalence about his candidacy in the state. A recent poll shows Trump leading Hillary Clinton by 15 percentage points in Oklahoma. Trump has at times struggles to gain traction even with Conservative voters in the state. Trump lost Oklahoma’s Republican primary to his GOP rival Ted Cruz, a Senator from neighboring Texas.

AP photo

Ever since recreational pot use became legal in Colorado, marijuana arrests in western Nebraska have been climbing, reports The Lincoln Journal-Star.

Marjorie Kamys Cotera

Texas is threatening to withdraw from the nation's refugee resettlement program, reports The Texas Tribune.

Public Domain

A backlog in Medicaid applications is costing Kansas more than two million dollars a year, reports The Lawrence Journal-World.

According to a recent state audit, the massive number of unprocessed first-time applications is weighing on the state budget. The audit also discovered that the state has stopped reviewing renewal applications for now.

Colorado Springs Police Department / cpr.org

The nation is still reeling from the aftereffects of two more controversial police killings last week. And now Colorado officials are looking to shore up policies on who should be given access to body camera footage in the event of an incident in the state.

Jann Mayer / Creative Commons

Is America’s rural infrastructure crumbling?

In a new seven-part series on “Keeping Rural America Competitive,” Agri-Pulse set out to answer that question.

The question is more pressing than ever. The world’s population is expected to exceed 9 billion by 2050. That means food production in the U.S. will need to increase dramatically. That means a strong infrastructure will be necessary to deliver crops, livestock, dairy and poultry products to markets.

Meg Kelly/NPR

HPPR will provide live broadcast coverage of the final presidential debate across the High Plains region, along with live transcript and fact-checking here at hppr.org, starting Wednesday at 8 pm Central Time.  The debate will run 90 minutes without a break and will be carried by HPPR without interruption.

David Shankbone / Creative Commons

Colorado election campaigns have filed their latest financial reports. Here are a few takeaways, courtesy of KUSA.

First of all, tobacco companies have deep pockets. Pro-tobacco groups have spent $5 million to keep a new tobacco tax from passing. That’s more money than any other campaign has raised in Colorado this cycle.

Office of the Attorney General of Texas / KTSA

The State of Texas is suing the Obama Administration once again, reports KTSA.

This time the lawsuit centers around a new federal overtime pay law. Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton says he’s “constantly” having to sue the government because he and his colleagues feels the Obama Administration is making new laws. And he insists that the Executive Branch’s job is to enforce laws, not write them.

US Department of Justice

President Obama’s labor secretary visited Colorado last week to push for a ballot measure that would raise Colorado’s minimum wage to $12 an hour by 2020, reports CBS 4 Denver.

U.S. Labor Secretary Tom Perez insists raising the minimum wage would have a positive impact on Colorado’s economy. However, studies vary widely on whether minimum wage hikes hurt or help state economies.

news9.com

In two weeks, Oklahoma will enter year two of its statewide stay on death-row executions, reports News 9.

Despite the long delay, there’s still no evidence that the state's board of corrections is drawing any closer to making a decision on execution protocol. The halt came in 2015 after a series of bungled executions sparked widespread shock and criticism. First Oklahoma nearly used the wrong drug on inmate Richard Glossip. Then that same drug was used to execute Charles Warner, who writhed in agony and took 43 minutes to die.

Evan Vucci / AP photo

Republicans believe they’ve finally establish a political foothold in Colorado, reports The Denver Post.

Nigel Parry / CNN

Donald Trump leads Hillary Clinton by double digits in Kansas, according to a new poll.

As The Wichita Eagle reports, the New York billionaire is ahead of the former Secretary of State by 12 points, 48 percent to 36 percent.

Libertarian Gary Johnson and Green Party candidate Jill Stein drew 8 percent and 2 percent, respectively.

In the race for U.S. Senate, Sen. Jerry Moran has a comfortable lead over his Democratic opponent Patrick Wiesner.

NewsOK.com

Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt's campaign team has been spending a lot of money. But not much of that money is actually being spent on elections, reports NewsOK.

Pruitt and his campaign team have spent well over half a million dollars since the beginning of last year. That’s despite the fact that Pruitt is ineligible to run again and hasn’t said he’s seeking another office.

The New York Times

Four out of every ten U.S adults don’t vote. Turnout in the U.S. is lower than in Canada, Mexico and most of Europe.

Non-voters in the U.S. are often assumed to be young people, or Hispanics, or the poor. But the truth, according to The New York Times, is the majority of people who didn’t vote in the 2012 presidential election were white, middle-income and middle-aged.

pbs.org

During most national election cycles, Colorado has long been known as a key battleground state. But this year Hillary Clinton is outpolling Donald Trump by a wide margin.

PBS recently reported from the reddest parts of the state. They were attempting to uncover why some Coloradans were switching their votes this season.

David Zalubowski / The Wichita Eagle

Voters in Kansas elections this November will not have to show proof of citizenship if they register using the federal form, reports The Wichita Eagle.

In January Kansas announced a controversial rule that would require proof of citizenship from voters who register using the federal form. But last week a federal appeals court rejected the rule. The court’s decision came after the League of Women Voters challenged the law.

Eric Gay / AP photo

Last week, voting rights advocates accused Texas Republicans of mounting a procedural end run around a panel of federal appeals court judges.

Austin American-Statesman

A Texas appeals court judge has questioned the fairness of the state’s life-without-parole sentences.

As The Austin American-Statesman reports, Judge Larry Meyers charged that no-parole sentences lack legal protections. The longtime Texas judge equated life-without-parole sentences to a slow-motion death penalty.

Judge Meyers was once a Republican, but is now a Democrat. He is the longest-serving member of the state’s highest criminal court.

Denton Record-Chronicle

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton and his wife accepted an invitation to dinner last week at the home of a third-grade transgender boy.

Amber and Adam Briggle of Denton invited Paxton and his wife, Angela, to spend a little time with them and their transgender son MG last week, to put a face on transgender issues.

Kansas City Star

A new poll by a GOP polling firm has found a big problem for Kansas Senate candidates this fall, and his name is Sam Brownback.

Washington Post

A new Washington Post poll lists Texas as a tossup state in the upcoming presidential election. According to the poll published Tuesday, Texas provided the most unexpected results of any state.

That’s because, as the Post noted, “The Lone Star State has been a conservative Republican bastion for the past four decades.”

Fort Worth Star-Telegram

Texas has stopped helping poor families pay their electric bills, reports The Fort Worth Star-Telegram.

Over the past years the Lone Star State ran a program called Lite-Up Texas. The initiative offered discounts to thousands of poor Texas families who were struggling to keep the lights on. But now the Public Utility Commission says the program has run out of money. The financial help ended on Aug. 31.

Getty Images

There have long been rumblings that Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper has a strong chance of leading Hillary Clinton’s Interior Department if she wins the White House. It’s a position that has often gone to popular lawmakers from the West. But now, as Politico reports, a blockade from the green wing of the Democratic Party could dash Hickenlooper’s hopes.

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