President Obama

Luke X. Martin / KCUR 89.3

Not only is David Litt one of the youngest presidential speechwriters ever, but he also has the distinct (dis)honor of deplaning Air Force One in his pajamas. Today, Litt shares stories about his time writing jokes — and some serious stuff, too — for President Barack Obama.

Claire Tadokoro / KCUR 89.3

There have been some hits and some misses during President Donald Trump's first 100 days in office. One thing everyone agrees on is there has been no shortage of surprises. Today, we hear from a distinguished panel of political observers; ABC News analyst Matthew Dowd, Time magazine editor-at-large David Von Drehle, and Pulitzer Prize-winning editorial writer Colleen Nelson, of the Kansas City Star. They discuss the early days of the new executive administration.

Public domain

In light of what will likely be his final televised address as president, we remember Barack Obama's greatest speeches and dissect the rhetoric behind them. Then, a conversation about whether the historic buildings and eclectic personality of Westport can survive in the modern economy.

Luke X. Martin / KCUR 89.3

We take a close look at election results from Kansas, Missouri, and the nation with a panel of political journalists. We're also joined by Kansas City 4th District Councilwoman Jolie Justus, U.S.

U.S. Representative Emanuel Cleaver just returned from a five-day trip to Kenya and Ethiopia with President Obama. He discusses the trip and his own connection to Africa.

Bill Anderson / KCUR

President Obama focused on child care reforms, his free community college proposal and reaching across the aisle in a speech at the University of Kansas Thursday.

He is the first sitting president to visit the Lawrence, Kan., school in more than 100 years.

Before he launched into the issues at hand, the president made sure to please the crowd with some Kansas love, saying how excited he was to visit Allen Fieldhouse before his speech.

Christopher Dilts / Obama for America

President Obama's Tuesday night State of the Union address focused on various domestic issues, with a dash of foreign policy.

In the last part of Wednesday's Up to Date, we talk about the speech and what it means for governmental policies this year. 

Guest:

  • Bob Beatty, professor of political science at Washburn University

Dan Verbeck / kcur

Speeches on the economy and the middle class in Illinois and Warrensburg, Mo. Wednesday were parts of a plan by President Obama.

President Obama said in Warrensburg he will take his message to a series of American towns in coming weeks.

In total, it was not a new theme. 

At University of Central Missouri the President talked of making a college education more affordable.

He also spoke of building more ladders for people to climb to the middle class, if willing to work for it. He said he would make early childhood education a priority.

$714 Million For NBAF In Obama Budget

Apr 11, 2013
Bryan Thompson / Kansas Public Radio

President Obama's 2014 budget proposal includes $714 million for the National Bio and Agro-Defense Facility.  It’s the state-of-the-art biosecurity lab planned for Manhattan, adjacent to Kansas State University. 

In response to the budget announcement, Kansas Governor Sam Brownback immediately pledged to work with lawmakers during the upcoming veto session to approve state bonds to help complete the lab.  The President is asking for an additional $202 million in state support for the project. 

It may be hard to remember, but the 2008 election broke racial and gender norms for politics. With President Obama, Sarah Palin and Hilary Clinton among the presidential and vice-presidential candidates in both major parties, the idea of race and gender was a common discussion. But what did that election mean to those who didn’t, and couldn’t vote?


Inaugural Poet Richard Blanco

Jan 21, 2013
Nico Tucci / Courtesy Richard Blanco

During the President’s inauguration ceremony on Monday, Richard Blanco delivered a poem written especially for this occasion.  At age 44, he is not only the youngest, but the first Latino and openly gay poet to have this honor. 

Democratic National Convention

If there's news to be had at this week's 2012 Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, North Carolina, Steve Kraske is there to report it.