Rob Mitchell

Rob Mitchell is the third generation of his family to work for the Rutland Herald and Barre-Montpelier Times Argus. He has worked in newspapers for 10 years, returning to Vermont in 2008 to join the family business.

Recent Posts

New poll shows Sanders tied for lead among Vermont Republicans

Steve Terry, at left, and Mike Smith, at right, on stage before the live streamed Republican presidential primary debate at the Paramount Theatre in Rutland.

New poll results show that Bernie Sanders is in a three-way tie for the lead among Vermont Republican voters. The results were revealed by commentator Steve Terry at the first Project 240 event held at the Paramount Theatre in Rutland, the live-streamed Republican primary debate. Project 240 will feature 17 events leading up to the 2016 election that focus on civic engagement and connecting the community with the election process. The poll, conducted by the Castleton Polling Institute, wrapped up Monday night, according to Terry. He did not indicate how many people were polled, but outlined the results on several questions pertaining to the presidential election. Continue Reading →

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Trailing Bernie: Endorsements, Black Lives and helicopters


ermont Sen. Bernie Sanders has lost out on a key endorsement in Iowa to rival Hillary Clinton. Former liberal Iowa Sen. Tom Harkin announced his support for Clinton, the former first lady, secretary of state and New York senator, in an op-ed published Thursday by the Des Moines Register. As The Associated Press reported, Harkin called Clinton a “fighter who has a record of getting things done.” He went on to note that Clinton “has devoted her career to championing the needs of children” and been a “tireless advocate for women and families.”
The Harkin endorsement of Clinton comes as Sanders’ surge in Iowa has appeared to slow. An average of recent Iowa polls calculated by shows Clinton’s support in Iowa at 55 percent. Sanders, meanwhile, is averaging 19.4 percent. Continue Reading →

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Trailing Bernie: In defense of the nation state


zra Klein, the liberal blogger of Vox, recently had one of the more complete and telling interviews with Sen. Bernie Sanders. Vox posted the lengthy transcript online earlier this week. (It can be read at One exchange is getting a lot of media attention. Ezra Klein: You said being a democratic socialist means a more international view. Continue Reading →

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Sanders PAC fined by FEC

MONTPELIER — Presidential candidate Bernie Sanders’ political action committee has been fined by the Federal Election Commission for failing to file financial reports on time. Documents obtained by the Vermont Press Bureau show that the Progressive Voters of America Leadership PAC, a so-called leadership committee that current and former members of Congress are allowed to create, paid about $8,000 in administrative fines in May. The FEC levies fines when a committee fails to file required reports or files them late. The fines are expected to be made public by the FEC next week. The Burlington-based committee’s treasurer, Phil Fiermonte, a longtime Sanders aide and currently the field director for Sanders presidential campaign, received a letter from the FEC in December warning that the committee may have failed to file required financial reports. Continue Reading →

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From the Bernie Files: “These politicians are sold like soap…”

We’re looking through the Rutland Herald archives for news clips from Bernie Sanders’ past, and will post the more telling or interesting ones as we find them. One theme that stands out so far is that Bernie Sanders, 1970s Liberty Union Party leader, is not too far off Sen. Bernie Sanders, Independent. They say basically the same thing. From an article by Rutland Herald reporter Barney Crosier, published on Nov. 7, 1976, which was based on an interview Sanders gave to a local Springfield radio station:
“…he said a major goal of the Liberty Union when it gets the governor’s chair will be to involve ordinary working people, those with low incomes, and the elderly, in the decisions of state government. Continue Reading →

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Capitol Beat: Press Bureau talks education with Jill Remick

Capitol Beat

Neal Goswami and Josh O’Gorman talk education with Jill Remick of the Agency Education. The legislature is considering several aspects of education reform, primarily changes to educational districts, and Remick, the agency’s  director of communications and legislative affairs, speaks about existing local consolidation efforts, potential changes to the law, and the goals of the Agency of Education.   Continue Reading →

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Scenes from the race to end the session

Sen. Joe Benning finds quiet time during the frantic race to the end of the biennium. #vtpoli

— Neal P. Goswami (@nealgoswami) May 8, 2014

Lawmakers sign off on S.295 deal, creating risk/needs assessments for offenders #vtpoli

— Neal P. Goswami (@nealgoswami) May 8, 2014

VT House Speaker Sharp Smith breaks down the budget situation for reporters. #vtpoli

— Andrew Stein (@andrewcstein) May 9, 2014

@GovPeterShumlin addresses a large pro #GMO labeling crowd before signing the bill #vtpoli

— Neal P. Goswami (@nealgoswami) May 8, 2014

Free @benandjerrys ice cream might be more popular than labeling #GMOs #vt #vtpoli

— Neal P. Goswami (@nealgoswami) May 8, 2014


Let's make a deal? #VT House Dem leader and @GovPeterShumlin's guy, Louis Porter, chat in the cafeteria #vtpoli— Neal P. Goswami (@nealgoswami) May 9, 2014

Page graduation #vtpoli— Barbara Rachelson (@BRVermont) May 9, 2014
Continue Reading →

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GMO labeling bill signed into law

MONTPELIER – Before a cheering crowd of hundreds, Gov. Peter Shumlin signed a first-in-the-nation food labeling bill into law, even as food producers continue to voice their opposition. The front lawn of the Statehouse was filled with families and consumer advocates as Shumlin signed a law that will require the packaging of some foods to indicate if they contain genetically modified organisms, or GMOs. “We will sign the first bill in America, joining 60 other countries, where Vermonters will have the right to know what’s in their food,” said Shumlin, who compared the law to Vermont begin the first state to abolish slavery and allow civil unions. (more…) Continue Reading →

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Mistakes may have contributed to 2-year-old’s death, committee finds

By Neal Goswami
MONTPELIER — A special Senate panel will seek subpoena power to obtain records and documents from the Rutland County Criminal Court and the Department of Children and Families in the course of its review of the Dezirae Sheldon case. The Senate Review Panel on Child Protection was created following the February death of the 2-year-old Sheldon from severe head trauma, allegedly at the hands of her stepfather, Dennis Duby. Members said Wednesday they want to know if mistakes made more than five years ago — and revealed in recent days — could have contributed to Sheldon remaining in an unsafe environment. Committee co-chairs Sens. Dick Sears, D-Bennington, and Claire Ayer, D-Addison, learned over the weekend of discrepancies in a previous criminal case involving Sheldon’s mother, 31-year-old Sandra Eastman. Continue Reading →

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Vermont’s state of the state address makes the New York Times

In the nightly news budget they send out the New York Times had the Vermont State of the State address listed as one story in consideration for the front page for today's paper. Instead of A1, Gov. Shumlin's single-minded focus on addiction landed on A12, but still, a nice write up from Katharine Q. Seelye from the State House yesterday:

In Annual Speech, Vermont Governor Shifts Focus to Drug Abuse

MONTPELIER, Vt. – In a sign of how drastic the epidemic of drug addiction here has become, Gov. Peter Shumlin on Wednesday devoted his entire State of the State Message to what he said was a “full-blown heroin crisis” gripping Vermont.  Posted with Blogsy Continue Reading →

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