Steve Inskeep

Steve Inskeep is host of NPR's Morning Edition, as well as NPR's morning news podcast Up First, with Rachel Martin and David Greene.

Known for probing questions to everyone from presidents to warlords to musicians, Inskeep has a passion for stories of the less famous—like an American soldier who lost both feet in Afghanistan, or an Ethiopian woman's extraordinary journey to the United States.

Since joining Morning Edition in 2004, Inskeep has hosted the program from New Orleans, Detroit, Karachi, Cairo, Houston and Tehran; investigated Iraqi police in Baghdad; and received a 2006 Robert F. Kennedy journalism award for "The Price of African Oil," on conflict in Nigeria. In 2012 he traveled 2,700 miles across North Africa in the wake of the Arab Spring. In 2013 he reported from war-torn Syria, and on Iran's historic election. In 2014 he drove with colleagues 2,428 miles along the entire U.S.-Mexico border; the resulting radio series, "Borderland," won widespread attention, as did the acclaimed NPR online magazine of the same name.

Inskeep says Morning Edition works to "slow down the news," making sense of fast-moving events. A prime example came during the 2008 Presidential campaign, when Inskeep and NPR's Michele Norris conducted "The York Project," groundbreaking conversations about race, which received an Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Silver Baton for excellence.

Inskeep was hired by NPR in 1996. His first full-time assignment was the 1996 presidential primary in New Hampshire. He went on to cover the Pentagon, the Senate, and the 2000 presidential campaign of George W. Bush. After the September 11, 2001, attacks, he covered the war in Afghanistan, turmoil in Pakistan, and the war in Iraq. In 2003, he received a National Headliner Award for investigating a military raid gone wrong in Afghanistan. He has twice been part of NPR News teams awarded the Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Silver Baton for coverage of Iraq.

On days of bad news, Inskeep is inspired by the Langston Hughes book, Laughing to Keep From Crying. Of hosting Morning Edition during the 2008 financial crisis and Great Recession, he told Nuvo magazine when "the whole world seemed to be falling apart, it was especially important for me ... to be amused, even if I had to be cynically amused, about the things that were going wrong. Laughter is a sign that you're not defeated."

Inskeep is the author of Instant City: Life and Death in Karachi, a 2011 book on one of the world's great megacities. He is also author of Jacksonland, a forthcoming history of President Andrew Jackson's long-running conflict with John Ross, a Cherokee chief who resisted the removal of Indians from the eastern United States in the 1830's.

He has been a guest on numerous TV programs including ABC's This Week, NBC's Meet the Press, MSNBC's Andrea Mitchell Reports, CNN's Inside Politics and the PBS Newshour. He has written for publications including The New York Times, Washington Post, the Wall Street Journal, and The Atlantic.

A native of Carmel, Indiana, Inskeep is a graduate of Morehead State University in Kentucky.

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Politics In The News

Apr 30, 2012

Tuesday marks one year from the day President Obama announced to the nation that Osama bin Laden had been killed. To underline the significance of the anniversary, the administration sent its counter-terrorism expert out on the airwaves Sunday. It also launched a controversial campaign ad about the raid against the al-Qaida leader.

Teams in the NBA playoff have begun their quest to be the champion. The headline story of the weekend: Chicago superstar Derrick Rose is out with a torn knee ligament.

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Seems like only a month or two ago that some pundits saw almost no way that Mitt Romney could easily sew up his party's nomination, and they spun out elaborate scenarios of a contested convention. Actually, it was only a month or two ago that some pundits were saying that. But now Romney's nomination is assumed, especially after he won five primaries this week. And that leaves him a full half year to make his case against President Obama.

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A special tribunal in The Hague has found former Liberian President Charles Taylor guilty of aiding war crimes. Taylor armed fighters in neighboring Sierra Leone in return for "blood diamonds."

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Let's talk about the surprisingly weak jobs report that came out from the Labor Department today. The numbers for March show just 120,000 new jobs were added to U.S. payrolls. That's considered a disappointment, even though the unemployment rate did decline slightly, to 8.2 percent.

NPR's John Ydstie is here to talk with us about what all this means. Hi, John.

JOHN YDSTIE, BYLINE: Hi, Steve.

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NPR's business news starts with Apple's giant pile of money.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

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This ranks among the more dismaying moments in a decade-long war. Americans have worked for years to position themselves as protectors of Afghans against murderous insurgents, and then yesterday a U.S. Army sergeant surrendered after a shooting rampage that left well over a dozen people dead. The list of those killed includes women and children, and the motive for the suspect remains unclear.

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It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning, I'm Steve Inkseep. Let's follow up on today's unemployment report. The Labor Department says unemployment stayed where it was, 8.3 percent, but the economy created 227,000 new jobs net.

GOP presidential candidate Rick Santorum won three Super Tuesday contests: Oklahoma, North Dakota and Tennessee. He just missed in Ohio. Mitt Romney went on to win there.

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It is estimated that more than 111 million people watched Sunday's Super Bowl. That is the biggest TV audience ever for the championship game. And with all the hype before and even after the match-up between the Giants and the Patriots, other sports were drowned out. NPR's Tom Goldman is going to help correct that. He's here to bring us up to date on some other sports news.

Hi, Tom.

TOM GOLDMAN, BYLINE: Good morning.

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Having sent observers to examine protests in Syria, Arab leaders have offered a plan to end the violence there. The proposal comes from the Arab League, a group of Arab nations. And NPR's Kelly McEvers has been following this story. She's in Beirut.

Hi, Kelly.

KELLY MCEVERS, BYLINE: Hello.

INSKEEP: OK. So what do the Arab leaders want to do?

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And now, let's bring in NPR's Cokie Roberts, as we do most Mondays. Cokie, good morning.

COKIE ROBERTS, BYLINE: Good morning, Steve.

INSKEEP: Well, yesterday, Newt Gingrich was all over the airwaves saying this is now a two-man race, Newt Gingrich and Mitt Romney - no Rick Santorum in there, as far as he's concerned, or Ron Paul, for that matter.

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Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has completed a four-country tour of left-leaning Latin American nations. His travels come as the West increases pressure on Iran over its nuclear program.

NPR's Juan Forero is in Bogota, Colombia. He's been monitoring Ahmadinejad's travels in this hemisphere. Hi, Juan.

JUAN FORERO, BYLINE: Hi. Hi, Steve.

INSKEEP: So where exactly did Ahmadinejad go?

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Whatever their disagreements, the presidential candidates agree on their next destination.

MITT ROMNEY: Tonight, we're asking the good people of South Carolina to join the citizens of New Hampshire...

UNIDENTIFIED MAN #1: Hello, South Carolina.

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The U.S. State Department says it's urging the government of the Persian Gulf kingdom of Bahrain to act on the findings of a major human rights report that has just been issued. That report details the abuses that took place during and after a mass uprising in Bahrain that was styled after movements in Tunisia and Egypt. The report was commissioned by the government itself and assembled by a team of international legal experts. But it remains to be seen whether it will lead to real reform and dialogue between the ruling Sunni monarchy and the Shiite majority.

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This week, we're asking what it really means to live in a world with 7 billion people. For some answers, we visit Karachi, Pakistan.

The grandest expression of the world's population growth is in the word "megacity." Dozens of these cities of more than 10 million now ring the globe, like a string of oversized pearls. In a megacity, people and ideas clash: The ancient collides with the modern; secular with religious; global with local. In Karachi, Pakistan, those forces can be seen in the story of a single piece of real estate.

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NPR's Sylvia Poggioli is on the line from Athens with more. Hi, Sylvia.

SYLVIA POGGIOLI: Hi there, Steve.

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