Jim McLean

REPORTER AND EDITOR, Kansas News Service

Jim McLean is managing director of the Kansas News Service, a collaboration between KMUW and other public media stations across Kansas. 

Jim was previously news director and Statehouse bureau chief for Kansas Public Radio and a managing editor for the Topeka Capital-Journal. He has received awards for journalistic excellence from the Kansas Press Association, Society of Professional Journalists and Kansas Association of Broadcasters.

 

Ways to Connect

March of Dimes

Residents of Protection, Kansas, came together in the spring of 1957 to make their town the first in the nation to be fully inoculated against polio. Today, like many rural communities, the town is divided over how to fight COVID-19.

PROTECTION, Kansas — Sixty-four years ago, residents of this tiny town in southwestern Kansas set a public health example. They made their town the first in the nation to be fully inoculated against polio.

It’s a different story today.

Jim McLean / Kansas News Service

FREDONIA, Kansas — Nick Baldetti resigned as director of the Reno County Health Department in July.

He left to head an effort to establish a school of health at McPherson College. It was a good opportunity, Baldetti said, but he likely would have stayed to see the department through the pandemic if not for the 80-hour work weeks, the hostile political environment and the threats to his family.

OVERLAND PARK, Kansas — Kansas Republican U.S. Rep. Roger Marshall is moving up to the U.S. Senate after surviving a challenge from Democrat Barbara Bollier in Tuesday’s election.

The 60-year-old two-term congressman from Great Bend will succeed Republican Pat Roberts, who is retiring after nearly 40 years in Congress. Marshall’s win also keeps intact Republicans’ winning streak in Kansas U.S. Senate races, a streak that dates back to 1938.

EL DORADO, Kansas — The culture war issues that are polarizing national politics are also front and center in Kansas’ U.S. Senate contest: race, guns, abortion, climate change.

Supporters of Republican candidate Roger Marshall fear a wave of Democratic victories will trigger radical changes in the nation’s economy and culture; that capitalism will give way to socialism, undocumented immigrants will stream across the U.S.-Mexico border and individual liberties will be threatened.

Two retired doctors are vying for Kansas’ open U.S. Senate seat, but that’s where the similarities end.

Jim McLean / Kansas News Service

TOPEKA, Kansas — The two doctors running for the U.S. Senate in Kansas are offering very different prescriptions for increasing access to affordable health care during the coronavirus pandemic.

TOPEKA, Kansas — It’s little surprise that the candidates for Kansas’ open U.S. Senate seat sharply disagree on taxes, trade, immigration and climate change. What’s unclear is who voters will most agree with in November: Republican U.S. Rep. Roger Marshall or Democratic state Sen. Barbara Bollier.

Bollier, a retired doctor, believes Marshall’s down-the-line support of President Donald Trump has created an opportunity for her to ride anti-Trump sentiment in the state’s population centers to an upset.

Jim McLean / Kansas News Service

More and more Kansans who lost jobs because of the coronavirus are falling behind in their rent and mortgage payments.

As many as 40 million Americans – including 357,000 Kansans – face the risk of eviction in the next several months.

Stephen Koranda / Kansas News Service

Getting married and having your first child is stressful enough. Try making those life changes during a pandemic. As a teacher.

TOPEKA, Kansas — Kansas’ biggest primary race was one of the first to be decided Tuesday: U.S. Rep. Roger Marshall secured the Republican nomination for U.S. Senate, and will face Democratic nominee Barbara Bollier in the November general election.

Officials had cautioned that the record numbers of mail-in advanced ballots — a sign of the times in a pandemic — could lead to delayed results. But by 10:30 p.m., all of the major contests were over.

Pages