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Common Grounds | Elections in a 24-Hour News Cycle

Cass County Locals Discuss Regional, National Races at New Town Bicycle and Coffee Shop

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This week the “Common Grounds” team heads southeast to the Cass County town of Pleasant Hill, Missouri, to sit down with four locals at the New Town Bicycle and Coffee Shop.

Dwight and Anita Widaman, Dave Moore, and Bob White met in the narrow, brick building at 115 Wyoming St. in the historic downtown. The bike shop sits at the front of the business and gives way to musical equipment used for live music performances. The coffee shop sits farther back.

Discussion turned to the elections.

“I don’t see much of anything [Trump has] done to be different than has been done in previous elections. I think it’s because we have a 24-hour news cycle,” Dwight Widaman said. “We didn’t have that under LBJ, or Roosevelt, or Truman. Previous presidents who had a lot of bullyish qualities.“

Moore focused on Missouri’s gubernatorial race.

“I’m attracted to the outsider because I think the system needs [to be] changed,” Moore said. “But I’m also very well aware that we all become parts of the systems in which we operate and it takes time.“

“Common Grounds” is a regular video series produced by KCPT in association with Consensus, a nonprofit focused on community engagement. Its purpose is to capture the pulse of our community over coffee. The segments run as part of “Week in Review,” which airs on Fridays at 7:30 p.m. and again on Sundays at 11 a.m. Flatland is also publishing the segments.

If you’d like the Common Grounds team to head to your coffee shop or listen in to your group, contact us at commongrounds@kcpt.org.

— Brett Baker is the Scripps Howard Foundation Fellow at the Hale Center for Journalism. He is also the coordinator for “Common Grounds.” To reach Baker, email intern_hale1@kcpt.org.

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