Bob Kinzel

Senior Reporter and Host, 'Vermont Edition'

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.

Ways to Connect

A person sits next to a whiteboard that reads "Caucus Countdown."
Charlie Neibergall / Associated Press

Most states, like Vermont, use primary elections to award delegates to Democratic presidential candidates. In less than two weeks, Iowa will hold caucuses to do so.

And as VPR senior political reporter Bob Kinzel explains, Iowa's votes will be tabulated in an additional, new way. 

In a primary election, a person has the opportunity to swing by the polls and vote pretty much anytime they want. You go in, you vote, you’re done.

Close headshot of Governor Phil Scott
Rick Bowmer / Associated Press File

Gov. Phil Scott delivered his 2020 budget address to lawmakers Tuesday. We're diving into the details of those proposals with a roundtable of Vermont political reporters.

Sen. Bernie Sanders speaks as fellow candidates (from left) Tom Steyer, Sen. Elizabeth Warren, former Vice President Joe Biden, South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg and Sen. Amy Klobuchar listen at Tuesday's primary debate.
Patrick Semansky / AP

The Democratic presidential race is in high gear, with the Iowa caucuses less than three weeks away. Sen. Bernie Sanders has made "Medicare For All" a major issue and is seeing strong support in both Iowa and New Hampshire.

Vermont Edition hosts a roundtable of political analysts to take a close look at the Democratic race.

Sen. Patrick Leahy at a podium with other lawmakers
Jose Luis Magana / Associated Press

The U.S. House formally sent two articles of impeachment over to the Senate on Wednesday, setting the stage for a Senate trial. It's expected that the Senate will deal with some procedural issues this week and actually begin the trial Tuesday.

Sen. Patrick Leahy, the senior Democrat on the Senate Judiciary Committee, talked to VPR about the key issues in the trial and whether or not additional witnesses should be called to testify.

Close up of Lt. Gov. David Zuckerman standing outside the Vermont Statehouse
Elodie Reed / VPR

Last week Lt. Gov. David Zuckerman said he'd made a decision about running for governor, and now that decision has been confirmed: He's going for it.

An upward view of the statehouse dome.
Elodie Reed / VPR

Gov. Phil Scott delivered his State of the State address Thursday and detailed key elements of his legislative agenda. Two administration officials join Vermont Edition to discuss Gov. Scott's top priorities for the 2020 session.

Lieutenant Governor David Zuckerman talks to reporters on the Vermont Statehouse steps.
Elodie Reed / VPR

Lt. Gov. David Zuckerman is poised to run for governor.

Talking to a group of reporters Tuesday, Zuckerman said that he's made a final decision and will make a formal announcement next week. 

A payphone hangs down over a blue placard with the PREA hotline on it.
Elaine Thompson / Associated Press

Human Services Secretary Mike Smith is calling for an immediate independent investigation into allegations of sexual abuse and drug use by guards at the Chittenden Regional Correctional Facility, the state's only prison for women.

Chief Justice Paul Reiber of the Vermont Supreme Court joins us to discuss the judicial branch in our state.
Liam Elder-Connors / VPR

What is the state of the judiciary branch in Vermont? And what challenges are on the horizon? Vermont Supreme Court Chief Justice Paul Reiber joins us to discuss some of the key issues facing Vermont's courts.

Two senators stand near a podium on Capitol Hill.
Susan Walsh / Associated Press File

Now that the U.S. House has voted to impeach President Donald Trump, a Senate trial is the next step — but Vermont Sen. Patrick Leahy says Senate Republicans appear ready to conduct a sham impeachment trial.

Rep Peter Welch
Alex Brandon / Associated Press

On Tuesday morning, House Democrats announced the two articles of impeachment they are bringing against President Donald Trump.

As Rep. Peter Welch and the rest of the House prepare to vote, the possibility of a Senate trial also prompts questions about how senators who are presidential candidates — like Sen. Bernie Sanders — may be impacted by the timing.

VPR's John Dillon joined'Vermont Edition' to discuss his recent report detailing communication between a utility and its regulators.
Meg Malone / VPR

Documents recently obtained by Vermont Public Radio show frequent contact between members of the Public Utility Commission and top executives at Green Mountain Power, the largest company they oversee.

In light of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's announcement that her chamber is moving ahead to draft Articles of Impeachment, Congressman Peter Welch joins the program to share his perspective.
Eman Mohammed For VPR

After several rounds of witness testimony and this week’s hearing with four constitutional scholars, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced Thursday her chamber is moving forward with drafting Articles of Impeachment against President Donald Trump. The full House is expected to consider and vote on these Articles in the next two weeks.

Former Vermont Governor Howard Dean has a new role with the Democratic National Committee, overseeing its voter data exchange.
Richard Shotwell / Invision via AP

In less than 10 weeks, voters in Iowa will caucus in the first step of the Democratic presidential primary race. Currently the four front-runners of the race are former Vice President Joe Biden, Sen. Elizabeth Warren, Sen. Bernie Sanders, and South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg.

Former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean, a 2004 presidential candidate, knows the primary process — and perils of Iowa — only all too well. He spoke with Vermont Edition about the 2020 primaries and priorities of voters today.

Podiums lined up for a Democratic Debate in Atlanta
John Amis / Associated Press

On Wednesday night, 10 Democratic candidates for president took the stage in Atlanta amid an impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump and a shifting field. Hosted by MSNBC and The Washington Post, these 10 candidates debated at Atlanta's Tyler Perry Studios.

Vermont Edition analyzes Wednesday's presidential primary debate with a roundtable of reporters.

Two congressmen- Rep. Denny Heck and Rep. Peter Welch - seated during a hearing.
J. Scott Applewhite / Associated Press

It's the second week of public testimony before members of the U.S. House Intelligence Committee, including Vermont Rep. Peter Welch, as part of the ongoing impeachment inquiry.

A view of baseball being played at Centennial Field in Burlington, Vermont.
Paul Stanfield / Vermont Lake Monsters

The future of the Vermont Lake Monsters is in doubt.

According to a New York Times report, the team is one of 42 minor league teams that Major League Baseball is proposing to sever ties with as part of a consolidation of the minor league system. If approved, the change would occur in 2021.

Congressman Peter Welch poses for a portrait outside his office at the Rayburn House Office Building in Washington, D.C.
Eman Mohammed for VPR

Rep. Peter Welch blew up the Twittersphere when he invited President Trump to participate in his own impeachment hearings. Welch made the comments on Wednesday, the first day of public impeachment hearings being held by the House Intelligence Committee. Welch is a member of that committee.

The golden dome of the Vermont Statehouse against blue sky
Ric Cengeri / VPR File

Democratic House Speaker Mitzi Johnson says the passage of a mandatory paid family leave bill will be a top priority in Vermont's 2020 legislative session, but Republican Gov. Phil Scott opposes the Democrats' approach to this issue.

Sen. Patrick Leahy walks with reporters around him.
Patrick Semansky / Associated Press

Earlier this week, the U.S. Senate Committee on the Judiciary held a hearing on the USA Freedom Act, a bipartisan law passed in 2015 that will sunset at the end of this year if Congress does not renew it. Vermont Sen. Patrick Leahy, a Democrat and the senior member of the committee, is a co-sponsor on the 2019 version of the act along with conservative Republican Utah Sen. Mike Lee.