Ted Robbins

As an NPR correspondent based in Tucson, Arizona, Ted Robbins covers the Southwest including Arizona, New Mexico and Nevada.

Specifically, Robbins reports on a range of issues from immigration and border security to water issues and wildfires. He covers the economy in the West with an emphasis on the housing market and Las Vegas development. He reported on the January 2011, Tucson shooting that killed six and injured many included Arizona Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords.

From Tombstone to Santa Fe, Phoenix to Las Vegas and Moab to Indian Country, there's no shortage of people, politics and places worth covering in the growing American Southwest. Robbins' reporting is driven by his curiosity to find, understand and communicate all sides of each story through accurate, clear and engaging coverage. In addition to his domestic work, Robbins has reported internationally in Mexico, El Salvador, Nepal and Sudan.

Robbins' reporting has been honored with numerous accolades, including two Emmy Awards: one for his story on sex education in schools, and another for his series on women in the workforce. He received a CINE Golden Eagle for a 1995 documentary on Mexican agriculture called "Tomatoes for the North."

In 2006, Robbins wrote an article for the Neiman Reports at Harvard about journalism and immigration. He was chosen for a 2009 French-American Foundation Fellowship focused on comparing European and U.S. immigration issues.

Raised in Los Angeles, Robbins became an avid NPR listener while spending hours driving (or stopped in traffic) on congested freeways. He is delighted to now be covering stories for his favorite news source.

Prior to coming to NPR in 2004, Robbins spent five years as a regular contributor to The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer, 15 years at the PBS affiliate in Tucson, and worked as a field producer for CBS News. He worked for NBC affiliates in Tucson and Salt Lake City, where he also did some radio reporting and print reporting for USA Today.

Robbins earned his Bachelor of Arts in psychology and his master's degree in journalism, both from the University of California at Berkeley. He taught journalism at the University of Arizona for a decade.

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6:30pm

Fri October 19, 2012
It's All Politics

Race For Arizona's Open Senate Seat Gets Personal

Originally published on Fri October 19, 2012 7:12 pm

Democrat Richard Carmona (left) and Republican Rep. Jeff Flake shake hands before Thursday's debate in Chandler, Ariz.
Ross Franklin AP

For the first time in nearly a generation, Arizona voters will elect a new senator. Republican Sen. Jon Kyl is retiring after 18 years. His ideological successor is Republican Rep. Jeff Flake, and a lot of people expected Flake to have an easy time of it.

But recent polls suggest Democrat Richard Carmona — a former surgeon general and a Hispanic — has a shot at winning. The race has become heated, and the airwaves are filled with brutal ads.

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4:17pm

Wed September 26, 2012
Around the Nation

Young Illegal Immigrants Seek Work Permits

Originally published on Wed September 26, 2012 5:54 pm

Carlos Martinez, 30, shows off his new work permit, which he received after applying for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program.
Mamta Popat Arizona Daily Star

It's been more than a month since the government began accepting requests for its Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, the Obama administration's policy for young people brought to the U.S. illegally as children. Hundreds of thousands of people are eligible for the program. So far, only 82,000 have applied.

Carlos Martinez is one of the 29 people who have actually gotten deferrals. It means that he won't be deported, and that he can get a work permit. Martinez applied for the deferred action program the first day.

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7:21am

Sat September 22, 2012
Around the Nation

U.S. Border Industry Grows As Immigration Slows

Originally published on Sat September 22, 2012 10:35 am

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

It's been more than a quarter century since the federal government enacted any immigration legislation which wasn't about enforcement and over that time, the government has spend hundreds of billions of dollars on fences, aircrafts, detention centers and agents. NPR's Ted Robbins looks at what taxpayer money has bought and why it's not likely to go away, even as budgets shrink and illegal immigration lessens.

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3:38am

Wed September 12, 2012
Law

U.S. Grows An Industrial Complex Along The Border

Originally published on Wed September 12, 2012 9:28 pm

A Border Patrol agent offers water to two men caught after illegally entering the U.S. through the Arizona desert. Roughly 80,000 federal workers have jobs related to immigration enforcement.
Ted Robbins NPR

The United States' southern border bristles with technology and manpower designed to catch illegal immigrants and drug smugglers. Since 1986, the government has spent hundreds of billions of dollars on fences, aircraft, detention centers and agents.

But even as federal budgets shrink and illegal immigration ebbs, experts say that there's no end in sight for the growth of the border-industrial complex.

A Growing Investment On The Border

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5:46am

Thu August 30, 2012
Election 2012

Ann Romney, Janna Ryan Campaign In Tampa

Originally published on Thu August 30, 2012 6:31 am

It was Ann Romney and Janna Ryan's turn to campaign in Tampa Wednesday. The wives of the Republican presidential and vice presidential candidates made a pitch to female voters. And Mrs. Romney reached out to Latinos.

6:57am

Wed August 29, 2012
Politics

GOP Rising Star: Gov. Martinez Is A Former Democrat

Originally published on Thu August 30, 2012 4:04 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And we'll be covering the impact of Hurricane Isaac throughout the morning on the program. Let's turn now to Tampa and the Republican convention. This evening, delegates will hear from Governor Susana Martinez of New Mexico. She's the nation's first Hispanic female governor. The GOP feels Martinez showcases the party's diversity. They hope she'll help attract Hispanic voters. But there's another reason Governor Martinez is a jewel for Republicans - she was once a Democrat. Here's NPR's Ted Robbins.

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5:02pm

Mon August 27, 2012
Election 2012

GOP Delegates Learn Policy From Gingrich At 'Newt U'

Originally published on Mon August 27, 2012 6:23 pm

Every day at the convention in Tampa, Newt Gingrich — the former House Speaker and a former college professor — will hold a two hour policy workshop.

3:34am

Wed August 15, 2012
Around the Nation

Young Illegal Immigrants Seek To Avoid Deportation

Originally published on Wed August 15, 2012 8:21 am

Young people brought to the U.S. illegally began applying for a deportation deferral and a two-year work permit on Wednesday. It's the boldest immigration program yet by the Obama administration — putting into effect elements of the so-called DREAM Act even though it has not passed Congress.

Lizbeth Mateo has high school and college diplomas from California and evidence that she has been in the country continuously for at least five years. What she wants now is assurance that she won't be deported.

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3:40am

Tue August 14, 2012
Dead Stop

A Wild Resting Place For Gunslingers And Cowboys

Originally published on Tue August 14, 2012 9:03 am

The Boot Hill cemetery in Tombstone, Ariz., is filled with the graves of men who met their end in the Wild West. While there are many such cemeteries in the Western U.S., Tombstone's is considered the most famous.
Ted Robbins NPR

If you're from a state once considered the "Old West," odds are you've heard of a Boot Hill graveyard. Turns out there are a number of Boot Hill cemeteries in the West, so named because many of their inhabitants died violently — with their boots on.

But of all the Boot Hill cemeteries, none is as famous as Boot Hill in Tombstone, Ariz.

It's a tough-looking place. No lawn, just gravel, mesquite trees and cactus. The graves are covered with stones to keep varmints from digging up the bones.

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6:05am

Wed July 25, 2012
Law

Ariz. Sheriff Arpaio Grilled On Racial Profiling

Originally published on Wed July 25, 2012 8:12 am

Maricopa County, Arizona, Sheriff Joe Arpaio made a court appearance Tuesday and faced questioning. Arpaio is accused of racial profiling in a civil class-action lawsuit.

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