Jessica Robinson

Inland Northwest Correspondent

Inland Northwest Correspondent Jessica Robinson reports from the Northwest News Network's bureau in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho. From the politics of wolves to racial tolerance in small towns, Jessica covers the economic, demographic and environmental trends that are shaping communities east of the Cascades.

Prior to joining the Northwest News Network team, Jessica was the news director of Jefferson Public Radio in Ashland, Oregon, where she produced a newsmagazine on Northern California and Southern Oregon. In 2010, she took a year to study Spanish in central Mexico and reported for an English–language newspaper in San Miguel de Allende. Jessica's stories for radio and print have earned awards from the Associated Press, the Oregon Newspaper Publishers Association, and Public Radio News Directors Inc.

A Northwest native, Jessica grew up in an off–the–grid log cabin in the Columbia River Gorge. These days, when she's not agonizing over the perfect piece of tape, Jessica enjoys camping and hiking, amateur photography, and learning the etymology of words.

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Bergdahl Release
5:56 am
Mon June 16, 2014

Idaho’s Politicians Walk A Careful Line In Debate Over Bergdahl Release

Bowe Bergdahl at age 16.
Credit Bergdahl family photo

Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl arrived at a military hospital in Texas Friday to continue his recovery process. There has been no shortage of strong opinions about the release of the former POW … except, that is, among Idaho's Congressional delegation. The two senators and two congressmen from Bergdahl's home state have largely avoided the national fray. Correspondent Jessica Robinson reports on what the four Republicans are saying about the controversial return of Idaho’s native son.

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Bergdahl Release
6:49 am
Wed June 4, 2014

Idaho Town That Waited 5 Years For Bergdahl Now Must Defend Its Support

Jane Drussel's store, Jane's Artifacts, in downtown Hailey, Idaho.
Credit Jessica Robinson / Northwest News Network

Almost immediately after the jubilant response to Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl’s release from the Taliban on Saturday, the story took a very different turn. First, there was criticism of the Obama administration exchanging five Taliban detainees for Bergdahl. Then, some soldiers from his former unit started speaking out against the freed POW. Josh Korder told CNN earlier this week that he believes men lost their lives searching for him.

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Bergdahl Release
2:12 am
Mon June 2, 2014

Sgt. Bergdahl's Hometown Rejoices At His Long-Awaited Release

A sign announcing the release of Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl sits outside the Power House restaurant in Hailey, Idaho.
Scott Olson Getty Images

Originally published on Mon June 2, 2014 7:32 am

The town of Hailey, Idaho, has waited five years to hear news of Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl's return. In 2009, Bergdahl was captured and held by the Taliban — first in Afghanistan and later, it's believed, in Pakistan.

On Saturday, he was released in a swap for five Guantanamo Bay detainees. Now Hailey, Bergdahl's hometown, is preparing for the next chapter.

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North Idaho Elections
6:51 am
Thu May 22, 2014

Tea Party Candidates Claim Victories In North Idaho

Republican incumbents in Idaho are celebrating major victories over Tea Party candidates this week. Gov. Butch Otter and Congressman Mike Simpson both prevailed against challenges to their conservative credentials. But it was a very different story in one part of the state. Jessica Robinson reports from Kootenai County in north Idaho.

Mary Souza had reason to celebrate on her Wednesday online talk show.

Radio show opener: “Jump aboard the Common Sense Express”

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Idaho Gubernatorial Primary
6:08 am
Wed May 21, 2014

GOP Incumbents Fend Off Far-Right Challengers In Idaho

Idaho gubernatorial candidate Russ Fulcher.
Credit Photo courtesy Russ Fulcher

Idaho's top Republican incumbents survived challenges from their more-conservative opponents last night. Governor Butch Otter won his party's gubernatorial nomination by a little over 50 percent of the vote. Correspondent Jessica Robinson has more.

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Anti-Discrimination Law
6:02 am
Wed May 21, 2014

Idaho City Narrowly Upholds Gay Rights Law In Closely Watched Vote

An effort to overturn one Idaho city's gay rights ordinance appears to have failed – but narrowly. The anti-discrimination law in Pocatello was upheld Tuesday night by a projected margin of 90 votes.

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Idaho Same-Sex Marriage
7:55 am
Wed May 14, 2014

Judge Overturns Idaho Same-Sex Marriage Ban

A federal judge in Boise has ruled Idaho's law banning same-sex marriage is unconstitutional. The ruling Tuesday by Judge Candy Dale is set to take effect at 9 a.m. on Friday. But, as Jessica Robinson reports, shortly after the ruling the governor vowed to appeal.

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Interstate Movement
5:54 pm
Wed April 30, 2014

Would You Move To Another State? Poll Shows How Many People Want To Move

The border with Washington at Oldtown, Idaho.
Credit Jessica Robbinson

A new Gallup poll reveals how many people prefer to be in a different state, given the chance. Overall, the Northwest has a pretty loyal crowd. Oregonians, in particular, are quite happy where they are. But the poll finds a high rate of Idahoans planning their goodbyes.

This June, Cat Wiechmann is finishing up her Master's in wetland ecology at the University of Idaho in Moscow. But instead of staying put, she’s heading to Pueblo, Colorado, for a university position there.

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City Council Recall
8:47 pm
Wed April 23, 2014

Entire City Council Of Idaho Town Faces Recall Effort Over Dog Shooting

A group of citizens in the small Idaho town of Filer started gathering signatures this week to recall the mayor and the entire city council. Their grievance is over the shooting of a pet dog back in February and the city's decision to retain the police officer who did it.

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Guns & Wildlife
6:09 pm
Wed March 26, 2014

How More People Buying Guns Equals More Money For Wildlife

The Pittman-Robertson Act sets an excise tax on rifles, pistols, bullets, and archery equipment to help pay for maintaining healthy wildlife populations.
Credit U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

The run on firearms last year is turning into a windfall for conservation programs in the Northwest. 

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