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Deep Background

Updated 5 days ago

News
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A news podcast by the Kansas City Star's political and news reporters, including in-depth commentary and analysis. It's a deeper look at news and issues in Kansas and Missouri.

Read more

A news podcast by the Kansas City Star's political and news reporters, including in-depth commentary and analysis. It's a deeper look at news and issues in Kansas and Missouri.

iTunes Ratings

20 Ratings
Average Ratings
14
3
1
1
1

More social commentary than legitimate reporting

By MT8131 - Nov 14 2018
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I’ve been listening to this podcast for a while. Initially, I was very elated there was a podcast about KC’s current events, but I’ve become increasingly frustrated by the host’s manner of, well, hosting. He brings people on to offer their expertise on certain issues or stories, but directs the conversation in a manner that isn’t journalistically smooth, and sometimes just isn’t professional. My sister gave up on this podcast months ago, and today I’m doing the same. “Bad dude”, “bad dude”, “bad dude”... while the guy they might be reporting on is a ‘bad dude’, I’m not listening to hear personal commentary. I’m listening for factual evidence about current happenings around the city. With this most recent podcast listing, I’ve hit a wall. I might give it a chance at a later date, but today, I am done.

Pretty Great Podcast

By claibor - Oct 07 2017
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I’ve really been impressed with the KC Star’s digital content recently. This podcast is awesome and interesting. Absolutely worth a listen for Kansas Citians and others.

iTunes Ratings

20 Ratings
Average Ratings
14
3
1
1
1

More social commentary than legitimate reporting

By MT8131 - Nov 14 2018
Read more
I’ve been listening to this podcast for a while. Initially, I was very elated there was a podcast about KC’s current events, but I’ve become increasingly frustrated by the host’s manner of, well, hosting. He brings people on to offer their expertise on certain issues or stories, but directs the conversation in a manner that isn’t journalistically smooth, and sometimes just isn’t professional. My sister gave up on this podcast months ago, and today I’m doing the same. “Bad dude”, “bad dude”, “bad dude”... while the guy they might be reporting on is a ‘bad dude’, I’m not listening to hear personal commentary. I’m listening for factual evidence about current happenings around the city. With this most recent podcast listing, I’ve hit a wall. I might give it a chance at a later date, but today, I am done.

Pretty Great Podcast

By claibor - Oct 07 2017
Read more
I’ve really been impressed with the KC Star’s digital content recently. This podcast is awesome and interesting. Absolutely worth a listen for Kansas Citians and others.
Cover image of Deep Background

Deep Background

Updated 5 days ago

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A news podcast by the Kansas City Star's political and news reporters, including in-depth commentary and analysis. It's a deeper look at news and issues in Kansas and Missouri.

Rank #1: A look at the Kansas governor race after Kobach's victory

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Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach will advance to face Democrat Laura Kelly and independent candidate Greg Orman in the general election for Kansas governor in November. Reporters Bryan Lowry and Hunter Woodall drop by to discuss what this means for the November election. Dave Helling and Leah Becerra co-host.
Aug 15 2018
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Rank #2: Gearing up for Aug. 7 primary elections

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This is the final week before Kansas and Missouri's primary elections on Aug. 7. Reporters Bryan Lowry and Hunter Woodall join co-hosts Dave Helling and Leah Becerra to talk about the candidates and the issues.
Aug 01 2018
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Rank #3: 'Luxury' hotel dispute raises the stakes in KC mayor's race

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Should Kansas City subsidize a $63 million luxury hotel downtown? Reporter Steve Vockrodt and host Dave Helling discuss the specifics of the plan, and why the debate will change the discussion in the race for Kansas City mayor.

For further reading:
‘It will not be built without the TIF’: Luxury hotel project due for vote next month - https://www.kansascity.com/news/business/development/article230161239.html

$63 million luxury hotel planned to complement Kauffman, attract high-end travel - https://www.kansascity.com/news/business/development/article218260005.html

Editorial: Public incentives for a new downtown luxury hotel? Kansas City should just say no - https://www.kansascity.com/opinion/editorials/article230116409.html
May 09 2019
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Rank #4: A 'blue wave' in Kansas? Plus, the state takes over 21 struggling nursing homes

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Could a ‘blue wave’ be coming to red Kansas? Reporter Eric Adler drops by to discuss his recent story ahead of the midterm election. And, normally, Kansas might have to take legal control of one or two nursing homes. This year, the state has taken more than 21. Reporter Andy Marso explains the implications of this. Dave Helling and Leah Becerra co-host.
Oct 10 2018
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Rank #5: Sales tax, pre-K education — and what's up with Clay County's government?

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Education reporter Mará Rose Williams joins the discussion this week to talk about the plan for a new sales tax hike to expand early childhood (pre-K) education. And data reporter Kelsey Ryan tells us why Clay County citizens are gathering signatures for a petition to the Missouri State Auditor. Dave Helling and Leah Becerra co-host Deep Background.
Jun 13 2018
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Rank #6: Recapping Kansas and Missouri's primary election results

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We're breaking down Kansas and Missouri's primaries with Lindsay Wise, of McClatchy's DC Bureau, and Missouri statehouse reporter Jason Hancock. Also, reporter Steve Vockrodt discusses Johnson County's voting machine issues. Dave Helling and Leah Becerra co-host.
Aug 08 2018
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Rank #7: What's a First Amendment auditor? And problems at KC's VA hospital

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Reporter Judy Thomas joins co-hosts Dave Helling and Leah Becerra to talk about "First Amendment auditors." These are citizens — often armed with cellphones, cameras and sometimes handguns — who scrutinize police stations and other public buildings by performing audits. Is it legal? Is it dangerous? Then, Star reporter Andy Marso discusses the lack of information about a death at the VA Hospital in Kansas City.

For further reading:
They roam public buildings, making videos. Terrorism experts say they may be dangerous - https://www.kansascity.com/news/local/crime/article224221620.html

Veteran died after a confrontation at Kansas City VA hospital. Senators demand answers - https://www.kansascity.com/news/business/health-care/article222800675.html

VA gives ‘totally insufficient’ response to Missouri senator query about vet’s death - https://www.kansascity.com/news/business/health-care/article224916270.html
Jan 24 2019
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Rank #8: The investigation into Sen.-elect Josh Hawley — and the latest on KC mayor’s pre-K tax

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Missouri GOP is demanding that the attorney leading the Secretary of State’s probe into Attorney General Josh Hawley recuse herself because of donations to Democratic candidates. Reporter Steve Vockrodt shares the latest. And Kansas City Public Schools will not support Mayor Sly James’ proposed 3/8-cent sales tax to support pre-kindergarten programs. Reporter Mará Rose Williams tells us what she's learned. Dave Helling and Leah Becerra co-host.
Dec 13 2018
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Rank #9: The Kansas City mayor's race and the endorsement battle in Kansas

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Deep Background host Dave Helling sits down with reporters Bill Turque and Hunter Woodall to talk about the latest developments in KC's mayor race and the Kansas governor's race.
Sep 19 2018
27 mins
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Rank #10: An update on Kansas City's mayor race

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KC City Hall reporter Allison Kite joins Deep Background this week to give an update on the mayoral race ahead of the April 2 primary. Dave Helling and Leah Becerra co-host.

For further reading:
List of Kansas City candidates for council, mayor preview a very different City Hall - https://www.kansascity.com/news/politics-government/article224515035.html

Buzz notes: Mayoral candidates want more accessible KC but disagree on how to get there - https://www.kansascity.com/news/local/news-columns-blogs/the-buzz/article225218155.html
Jan 30 2019
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Rank #11: Kansas City mayoral candidate Jason Kander drops out. What's next?

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Star reporters Steve Vockrodt and Bill Turque join Dave Helling of the Star's editorial board to talk about Jason Kander's stunning decision to drop from the Kansas City mayor's race - and what it means for Kansas City politics.
Oct 02 2018
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Rank #12: Quinton Lucas will be Kansas City's next mayor. Now what?

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The Star's Allison Kite and Bill Turque join host Dave Helling to discuss Kansas City's election results. How did Quinton Lucas win? And what's next? Plus a look at Question 1's defeat.

For further reading:
Quinton Lucas scores decisive win over Jolie Justus in Kansas City mayor’s race - https://www.kansascity.com/news/politics-government/election/article231659313.html

Kansas City voters say no to Question One to cap developers’ incentives - https://www.kansascity.com/news/politics-government/election/article231658443.html

In a night of blowout wins, two KC City Council races stay nail-biters to the end - https://www.kansascity.com/news/politics-government/election/article231658408.html
Jun 19 2019
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Rank #13: The Quinton Lucas era begins in Kansas City

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City Hall reporter Allison Kite and investigative reporter Steve Vockrodt join host Dave Helling to talk about Kansas City's new mayor, Quinton Lucas. Join them — and hear from Lucas himself — about his goals for City Hall, and what the city can expect from this change in leadership.

For further reading:

KC Mayor-elect Quinton Lucas pledges cooperation with Kansas during visit to Congress - https://www.kansascity.com/news/politics-government/article233309007.html

The challenge for Lucas: melding ‘twelve mandates’ into a majority for his agenda - https://www.kansascity.com/news/politics-government/election/article231770338.html

The hits, the misses and the swagger: summing up the Sly James era in Kansas City - https://www.kansascity.com/news/politics-government/article232800067.html

Melinda Henneberger: KC Mayor Sly James’ hand-off to Quinton Lucas has been more like a brush-off - https://www.kansascity.com/opinion/opn-columns-blogs/melinda-henneberger/article233192376.html
Aug 01 2019
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Rank #14: How does Kansas City put a stop to gun violence and shootings?

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After a week of violence in Kansas City that left six dead, residents and city leaders are discussing ideas to curb gun violence. Reporters Kaitlyn Schwers and Luke Nozicka covered a recent high-profile shooting at Crossroads' First Fridays and here to talk about what the mayor and other city leaders may do to confront the issue. Leah Becerra and Dave Helling co-host.

For further reading:

Woman shot and killed at First Fridays identified as daughter of Leawood pastor - https://www.kansascity.com/news/local/crime/article233489192.html

‘Stop hiding’: KC mother begs witnesses for help finding her son’s killer - https://www.kansascity.com/news/local/crime/article233536252.html

‘We live it’: In Kansas City, local leaders suggest answers to gun violence problem - https://www.kansascity.com/news/local/crime/article233541357.html

List of Kansas City area homicides in 2019 - https://www.kansascity.com/news/local/crime/article223986505.html
Aug 08 2019
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Rank #15: Former Gov. Greitens' use of Confide shocked Missouri political world

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Gov. Eric Greitens' use of a secret message app called Confide was revealed in 2017, but the controversy surrounding it still swirls today. This week, politics reporter Jason Hancock joins host Leah Becerra to take a deep dive into Confide, its use in Missouri government, and the fear that a recent court ruling may undermine open records laws.

For further reading:

‘Dream for fans of corruption’: Greitens Confide ruling vexes transparency advocates - https://www.kansascity.com/news/politics-government/article232439834.html

Former Missouri Gov. Greitens’ use of Confide didn’t violate Sunshine Law, judge says - https://www.kansascity.com/news/politics-government/article232418307.html

Missouri lawmakers hoped to ban secret texting apps in government. Time is running out - https://www.kansascity.com/news/politics-government/article230093804.html
Jul 24 2019
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Rank #16: Shielding LGBTQ people from discrimination; Kansas child welfare system is still troubled

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Reporter Rick Montgomery stops by to discuss his installment in The Star's Influencers series on LGBTQ people and discrimination protection. And Laura Bauer discusses her recent stories on the Kansas Department for Children and Families. Dave Helling and Leah Becerra c-host.
Sep 26 2018
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Rank #17: This technology could prevent semi truck crashes, but our government won’t require it

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Safety technology could be the key to preventing hundreds of deaths and thousands of injuries annually from rear-end truck crashes. But federal regulators haven’t acted to require these safety systems. Reporter Mike Hendricks discusses his recent investigation into this issue with Deep Background host Leah Becerra.
Sep 12 2018
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Rank #18: The changing race for Kansas City mayor

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Dave Helling of the Star's editorial board chats with Steve Vockrodt and Bill Turque about Jason Kander's entry into the Kansas City mayor's race.
Jun 27 2018
30 mins
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Rank #19: We look at a free speech case at UMKC, Sprint's merger plans and KC's downtown hotels

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An anti-transgender speech delivered at the University of Missouri-Kansas City was orchestrated by an outside conservative group trying to cause disruption, student leaders said last week. Reporter Mará Rose Williams helps us unpack what's happened since the controversial event. Also, reporter Steve Vockrodt is here to discuss the latest in the Sprint and T-Mobile merger as well as his recent story on new data that shows a lack of demand for hotels in Kansas City.

For further reading:

Protester at right-wing UMKC event arrested, but was speaker hoping for a disruption? - https://www.kansascity.com/news/local/article229180734.html

UMKC chancellor response to conservative speaker attack faces backlash in Missouri Legislature - https://www.kansascity.com/news/politics-government/article229345909.html

Report says Sprint and T-Mobile merger is in trouble, but company leaders disagree - https://www.kansascity.com/news/business/article229364509.html

After a glut of new hotels in KC, a realization: There’s now more supply than demand - https://www.kansascity.com/news/local/article229135804.html
Apr 17 2019
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Rank #20: A look at Kansas City's city council as this term comes to a close

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The KC city council's last meeting of the current term is this week. The Star's city hall beat reporter Allison Kite and politics editor Bill Turque are here with host Dave Helling to talk about the council members' final days. How did the members do? And what comes next?

For further reading:

Kansas City Council strikes deal on medical marijuana proximity to schools, churches - https://www.kansascity.com/news/politics-government/article232568727.html

With weeks left in office, KC Council votes pay raise for incoming members, mayor - https://www.kansascity.com/news/politics-government/article232572577.html

The challenge for Lucas: melding ‘twelve mandates’ into a majority for his agenda - https://www.kansascity.com/news/politics-government/election/article231770338.html
Jul 17 2019
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