Bob Kinzel

Host, Reporter

Bob is a veteran Vermont journalist, specializing in political reporting. He is based in VPR’s Capital Bureau located across the street from Vermont’s Statehouse. Prior to joining VPR full time in 2002, Bob ran the Vermont News Service for 21 years. The service provided daily local news for eleven stations, including VPR. Bob started the News Service following a stint as news director for WNCS.

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Sen. Patrick Leahy says GOP leaders are blocking the release of key information concerning allegations of sexual assault brought against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh
Manuel Balce Ceneta / Associated Press

Sen. Patrick Leahy is accusing Senate Republican leaders of trying to block an investigation into the facts around allegations of sexual assault that have been brought against U.S. Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.

Sen. Bernie Sanders speaks with arms outstretched in front of a bright blue screen at a podium at the Democratic National Convention in 2016.
J. Scott Applewhite / Associated Press

At the urging of Sen. Bernie Sanders, the Democratic National Committee has taken steps to reduce the influence of so-called "superdelegates" in the party's presidential nomination process.

Wilson Ring says hello to Murphy the Dog after the pooch's odyssey of more than a year finally came to an end.
Lucy Ring

In early 2016, a collective sigh of relief could be heard from the town of Waterbury when Murphy the Dog was caught and returned to its owners. For a year and a half, the community pulled together in an effort to find this amazing golden retriever. His odyssey is now an e-book called Catching Murphy, written by long-time Associated Press reporter Wilson Ring.

From left: Vermont Attorney General TJ Donovan, Rep. Peter Welch and Agency of Human Services Secretary Al Gobeille at a Montpelier press conference on Tuesday announcing their support for an expanded Medicaid fraud bill.
Bob Kinzel / VPR

Rep. Peter Welch said he's optimistic that his bipartisan bill that expands the authority of state Medicaid Fraud Units will soon be passed by Congress — and Vermont officials say the bill will give them greater ability to investigate a wide range of fraud cases.

More senior citizens die by falling than in motor vehicle accidents annually in Vermont.
Zinkevych / iStock

It's a startling fact. Each year, more people 65 or older in Vermont die from falls than in motor vehicle crashes. So learning how to prevent or survive falls is an important skill to learn, especially for our senior citizens.

Sen. Patrick Leahy, left, and Sen. John McCain, talk during a hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington in March 2017. Russian opposition politician Vladimir Kara-Murza, with his wife Evgenia Kara-Murza, are to the right.
Manuel Balce Ceneta / AP

Arizona Sen. John McCain died Saturday, Aug. 25, at 81, and all this week the passing of the former naval airman, Vietnam veteran, senator and past presidential nominee has been marked with ceremonies and memorials from Arizona to Washington, D.C.

Many of McCain's Congressional colleagues have reflected on his life and career, including Vermont Sen. Patrick Leahy, who worked alongside McCain for 32 years in the U.S. Senate.

State highway safety officials say increasingly aggressive drivers and texting while driving continue to plague Vermont's roads.
SHSPhotography / iStock

Vermont is seeing more cases of aggressive driving on its roads. And more drivers are using cell phones while driving, even though it's against the law.  We're talking with highway safety officials about how they're addressing these issues. 

Democratic gubernatorial nominee Christine Hallquist speaks at a podium in Montpelier during a news conference.
Wilson Ring / Associated Press

Party Chair Anthony Pollina says the Progressives want to see how Democratic gubernatorial candidate Christine Hallquist addresses some of the top issues facing the state during the next few weeks before they decide if they want to formally endorse her campaign.

Con Hogan at a gubernatorial campaign press conference in 2002
Toby Talbot / Associated Press

One of Vermont's most influential health care policymakers has died.

Cornelius "Con" Hogan made it possible for virtually all young people in Vermont to have health care coverage, and he strengthened programs to improve the lives of children and families.

This Lyndonville polling place was once a school, but has since been turned into town offices for Lyndon.
Amy Kolb Noyes / VPR

Vermont’s primary elections defied conventional wisdom by registering a higher than expected voter turnout. We turn to VPR reporter Bob Kinzel to help us parse the details of this election and what made people turn up at the polls.

Green Mountain Care Board Chair Kevin Mullin joins "Vermont Edition" to discuss health care rates, hospital budgets and the state's overhaul of how health care reimbursements are made.
SteveColeImages / iStock

This month the Green Mountain Care Board told Vermont health insurers they won't get the rate increase they want. In the board's ongoing struggle with health care costs, it's also reviewing hospital budgets to curb medical spending and overhauling how Vermonters reimburse health care providers. We're talking about containing health care costs with GMCB Chair Kevin Mullin. 

Michael Cohen, wearing a suit, opens a door to depart federal court Tuesday, Aug. 21, 2018.
Mary Altaffer / Associated Press

Sen. Patrick Leahy said it's the responsibility of the Senate Committee on the Judiciary to follow up on allegations raised by President Donald Trump's former attorney Michael Cohen.

A survey from the Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department assesses Vermonter's opinions on a variety of issues. We're talking about the results.
Toby Talbot / Associated Press

The Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department has just released a new comprehensive survey that examines how Vermonters look at issues including fishing, hunting, trapping and wildlife preservation. We’re looking at these results and what they mean for the future of the state's wildlife.

Gov. Phil Scott speaks at a podium following The Associated Press calling him the winner of the Republican gubernatorial primary race.
Bob Kinzel / VPR

Gov. Phil Scott easily won the Republican gubernatorial nomination Tuesday against businessman Keith Stern. 

At his campaign launch in Barre in May, Democrat James Ehlers touted his policy agenda as the most progressive of the candidates seeking the governor's seat in 2018.
Peter Hirschfeld / VPR

Not many statewide candidates turn to the Vermont Constitution as the foundation for their political philosophy but Democratic gubernatorial hopeful James Ehlers does.

Sen. Bernie Sanders is running for a third term in the U.S. senate. He'll be on the primary ballot seeking the Democratic nomination.
Steven Senne / AP

Sen. Bernie Sanders is running for a third term in the U.S. Senate. He'll be on the primary ballot on Tuesday, Aug. 14, seeking the Democratic nomination.

Voters filled booths in Norwich in 2016.
Angela Evancie / VPR file

Next Tuesday voters will select the major-party candidates for statewide, legislative and county offices. We're hosting a reporter roundtable looking at the candidates and issues of these races, including the gubernatorial primaries, as well as the primaries for Vermont’s U.S. House and Senate seat that are up for election this year.

Dan Freilich is among three Democratic candidates seeking to be the party's nomination for Vermont's only seat in the U.S. House.
courtesy Freilich campaign

Dan Freilich is seeking the Democratic nomination for the U.S. House to be a "tireless advocate" for campaign finance reform. He calls the current election financing system corrupt, with a corrosive impact on almost every important issue facing Congress.

It's a campaign of big ideas that has its genesis, Freilich says, with his parents' lifetime of public service.

Challengers Dan Freilich, left, and Ben Mitchell, center, will debate incumbent Rep. Peter Welch in the Democratic primary for Vermont's sole seat in the U.S. House.
Freilich campaign / DEBORAHANNE MAYER courtesy Mitchell campaign / Liam Elder Conners, VPR file

Three candidates are running to be the Democratic nominee for Vermont's only seat in the U.S. House. As part of VPR's coverage of contested statewide and federal races, Vermont Edition hosts a debate between Dan Freilich, Ben Mitchell and incumbent Rep. Peter Welch.

Incumbent Gov. Phil Scott, left, and primary challenger Keith Stern debate their case to be the Republican candidate for governor.
VPR file

We're beginning our series of live debates for selected statewide and federal offices with the Republican candidates for governor: incumbent Gov. Phil Scott and challenger Keith Stern.

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