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Bob Watson (Reporter)

Phone: 573-761-0245
E-mail: bwatson@newstribune.com
Bob Watson primarily reports on Missouri state government, including the Legislature with a focus on the state Senate; the six statewide offices (governor, lieutenant governor, attorney general, secretary of state, auditor and treasurer); and the courts at the trial, appeals and Supreme Court levels. He also covers the governing boards for Lincoln University in Jefferson City and the State Technical College of Missouri, Linn. He is based in Jefferson City and has lived in Missouri's capital since July 1974. He has worked in radio (1972-82), television (1982-89) and at the News Tribune since January 1989. Watson won the Missouri Bar's "Excellence in Journalism" award several times and has been part of News Tribune teams that have won awards from the Missouri Press and Kansas City Press associations. His journalism work began on his high school newspaper in St. Louis, and he's been covering news on at least a part-time basis since 1972 during his senior year in college in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. In high school, he wanted to be a teacher. In college, he realized journalism is another way — and better for him — to help people learn about the world around them.

Parson: Reorganization effort progressing

Published Mar. 20 2019

Gov. Mike Parson's plan to reorganize part of state government — especially intended to improve economic and workforce development —...

Sen. Riddle bill would allow some child death statistics to be public information

Published Mar. 1 2019

"Each year, about 1,000 children die" in the state of Missouri, Sen. Jeanie Riddle, R-Mokane, told members of the Senate's...

Karsten still learning new public safety job

Published Jan. 3 2019

Sandra Karsten is learning her third job in less than two years.

MU, St. Mary's officials answer merger questions

Published Dec. 12 2018

Questions and answers took up about two-thirds of Monday night's 90-minute public meeting about SSM Health's proposed sale of the...

Officials: Deeper understanding of crime needed

Published Dec. 9 2018

LINN — Reducing crime and improving the state's Corrections system are important parts of Gov. Mike Parson's main goals of...

Appeals court orders retrial on sodomy count

Published Dec. 6 2018

James Kevin Adams, 52, of Holts Summit, is entitled to a re-trial on his conviction of one count of statutory...

Schmitt named to be Missouri's new Attorney General

Published Nov. 14 2018

State Treasurer Eric Schmitt will become Attorney General Eric Schmitt starting Jan. 3 — the day current Attorney General Josh...

Judge clarifies voter ID ruling

Published Oct. 24 2018

Cole County Senior Judge Richard Callahan made it clear Tuesday — his Oct. 9 ruling in the voter ID lawsuit...

MoDOT talks money needs at planning meeting

Published Oct. 10 2018

MoDOT's planning meeting Tuesday at Jefferson City's McClung Park was the second stop on a nine-city tour around the state.

Annual 'energy fair' showcases energy alternative

Published Sep. 4 2018

For nearly two decades, the Rev. Larry Rice and the New Life Evangelistic Center have hosted an energy fair to...

Karsten named state Public Safety director

Published Aug. 28 2018

Highway Patrol Superintendent Sandra Karsten is Gov. Mike Parson's choice to be Missouri's next Public Safety director.

State ready to implement 'merit reform'

Published Aug. 26 2018

Beginning Tuesday, Missouri's Merit System ends for nearly all state employees.The bill ending the Merit System was one of the...

Judge sets medical marijuana hearing for Sept. 14

Published Aug. 24 2018

Brad Bradshaw, of Springfield, wants two of the three medical marijuana issues removed from Missouri's Nov. 6 ballot, arguing both...

Democrats appeal lieutenant governor appointment case

Published Jul. 19 2018

Missouri's Democratic Party wants the state Supreme Court to decide if the governor has the authority to fill a vacancy...

Ethics complaint filed against Greitens

Published Jul. 11 2018

State Rep. Jay Barnes has filed a formal complaint with the Missouri Ethics Commission about former Gov. Eric Greitens' campaign...

Missouri Democrats sue over lieutenant governor appointment

Published Jun. 19 2018

The Missouri Democratic Party is suing to block the appointment of Mike Kehoe as lieutenant governor.

Kehoe named lieutenant governor

Published Jun. 19 2018

State Sen. Mike Kehoe, R-Jefferson City, is Missouri's new lieutenant governor, effective Monday afternoon.

Parson urges 'a fresh start' in first address at joint-Legislature

Published Jun. 12 2018

Missouri must make "a fresh start at a difficult time for our state," new Gov. Mike Parson said Monday,...

Subpoenas hearing canceled

Published Jun. 7 2018

The Missouri House special committee formed to investigate now-former Gov. Eric Greitens' legal situation has ended its request for a...

Parson sworn in as Missouri governor

Published Jun. 1 2018

It took just 30 seconds for Michael L. Parson, 62, to take the oath of office and become Missouri's 57th...