Mark Memmott

Mark Memmott is one of the hosts of NPR's "The Two-Way" news blog.

"The Two-Way," which Memmott helped to launched when he came to NPR in 2009, focuses on breaking news, analysis, and the most compelling stories being reported by NPR News and other news media.

Before joining NPR, Memmott worked for nearly 25 years as a reporter and editor at USA Today. He focused on a range of coverage from politics, foreign affairs, economics, and the media. He's reported from places across the Unites States and the world, including half a dozen trips to Afghanistan in 2002-2003.

During his time at USA Today, Memmott, helped launch and lead three USAToday.com news blogs: "On Deadline," "The Oval" and "On Politics," the site's 2008 presidential campaign blog.

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8:05am

Tue April 24, 2012
The Two-Way

It's Zip It Day On Google

Originally published on Tue April 24, 2012 8:31 am

Google

7:22am

Tue April 24, 2012
The Two-Way

Today's Primaries: Gingrich's Swan Song Or Reason To Remain?

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich earlier this month in New York City.
Spencer Platt Getty Images

Nothing about what happens during today's Republican presidential primaries in five states is expected to change the fact that Mitt Romney is the presumptive/expected/presumed/inevitable (pick your favorite word) nominee.

Polls are open in Connecticut, Delaware, New York, Pennsylvania and Rhode Island. There are 209 convention delegates at stake and Romney could pull off a five-state sweep.

But — and there's always a but — there's this:

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11:35am

Mon April 23, 2012
The Two-Way

VIDEO: Space Out With NASA's 'Walking On Air'

Originally published on Mon April 23, 2012 11:52 am

From NASA's 'Walking on Air' video, a view of an aurora from space.
NASA.gov

If you're into images of Earth taken from space, NASA has a new video for you. Called Walking on Air, it "features a series of time lapse sequences photographed by the Expedition 30 crew aboard the International Space Station" and is set to the song Walking in the Air by Howard Blake.

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11:00am

Mon April 23, 2012
The Two-Way

U.S., Afghan Security Pact Is Sweeping But Not Specific

U.S. Marines in southern Afghanistan last June.
David Gilkey NPR

While the headlines proclaim that thanks to a new draft agreement the U.S. will continue to defend Afghanistan for a decade after the planned 2014 withdrawal of foreign combat forces from that country, the stories themselves make clear that many of the key details remain to be worked out:

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10:08am

Mon April 23, 2012

9:46am

Mon April 23, 2012
The Two-Way

Several More Secret Service Agents Tied To Scandal Likely To Lose Their Jobs

Within the next few days, several more Secret Service agents will lose their jobs because of their roles in the so-called summit scandal during which they allegedly cavorted with prostitutes in Colombia earlier this month, the chairman of the House Committee on Homeland Security said this morning.

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9:03am

Mon April 23, 2012
The Two-Way

VIDEO: World Peace Causes World Of Pain With Elbow To Opponent's Head

The NBA's Ron Artest changed his name to Metta World Peace last year.

But the player known for being at the center of a 2004 brawl in the stands at the Palace of Auburn Hills in Michigan showed Sunday that his new name doesn't mean he's changed all his wild ways.

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8:22am

Mon April 23, 2012
The Two-Way

To Keep His Job, France's Sarkozy Must Reach To The Right

French President Nicolas Sarkozy after Sunday's vote.
Marc Piasecki Getty Images

"Far-right National Front candidate Marine Le Pen" now has a chance to swing the French presidential election, as France 24 reports, after pulling in 18 percent of the ballots in the first round of voting Sunday.

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7:22am

Mon April 23, 2012
The Two-Way

Now It Snows?

Originally published on Mon April 23, 2012 12:12 pm

Don Buckley took his dog Gracie for a walk during the snowstorm this morning in Akron, N.Y.
David Duprey AP

The Northeast and mid-Atlantic began the cold season with an unusual Halloween snowstorm that knocked out power to millions. And after that? Almost no snow in may parts of those regions.

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6:46am

Mon April 23, 2012
The Two-Way

Zimmerman Released After Posting Bail, Will Go Into Hiding But Be Monitored

George Zimmerman, left, as he walked out of jail earlier today. The other man was not identified.
Brian Blanco AP

Just after midnight earlier today, George Zimmerman — the man at the center of a killing that has become a national story because of its racial overtones — was released from the Sanford, Fla., jail where he was being held while awaiting trial.

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2:43pm

Wed April 18, 2012
The Two-Way

Escort Offers New Details Of Secret Service Scandal

Originally published on Wed April 18, 2012 4:25 pm

The New York Times just posted what it says are the first public comments from the Colombian woman whose argument with a U.S. Secret Service agent last week revealed the so-called summit scandal.

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2:09pm

Wed April 18, 2012
The Two-Way

In Colorado, Frozen Cows Are A Conundrum In Conundrum

Originally published on Wed April 18, 2012 6:45 pm

The Conundrum Creek Cabin where the cows met their unfortunate end. Photo taken on April 6.
Brian Porter AP

11:45am

Wed April 18, 2012
The Two-Way

Retired Couple Bought Winning Mega Millions Ticket In Illinois

Merle and Patricia Butler (at right) accepting their ceremonial check earlier today.
Illinois Lottery

The winning ticket in Illinois from last month's record $656 Mega Millions lottery has been turned in by a retired couple from the little town of Red Bud, Ill.

"Merle Butler, 65, and his wife Patricia, 62, accepted the giant check Wednesday morning," as Chicago's WLS-TV reports.

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11:22am

Wed April 18, 2012
The Two-Way

Take That, Kids: Jamie Moyer Is Oldest Pitcher To Win An MLB Game

Jamie Moyer of the Colorado Rockies after his record-setting win Tuesday night in Denver.
Doug Pensinger Getty Images

He's not as old as some bloggers (sigh!), but the Colorado Rockies' Jamie Moyer is now the holder of an impressive age-related record.

Tuesday night, at the age of 49 years, 150 days, he became the oldest pitcher to ever win a Major League Baseball game.

Playing in Denver, the Rockies beat the San Diego Padres 5-3. "Moyer worked seven innings, allowing no earned runs on six hits," The Denver Post reports.

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10:32am

Wed April 18, 2012
The Two-Way

Swedish Official Calls 'Racist Cake' A Piece Of Provocative Art

The cake, with artist Makode Aj Linde "performing" as the screaming head.
Facebook.com

There's a growing controversy in Sweden over whether Culture Minister Lena Adelsohn Liljeroth should have smilingly cut into a cake in the shape of a naked black woman during a World Art Day event over the weekend.

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9:04am

Wed April 18, 2012

8:33am

Wed April 18, 2012
The Two-Way

Ted Nugent Stands Firm, Secret Service To Look Into His Words About Obama

Ted Nugent, during his appearance at the NRA convention over the weekend in St. Louis.
NRA Videos

For telling National Rifle Association members over the weekend that "I will either be dead or in jail by this time next year" if President Obama is re-elected, rocker Ted Nugent has now attracted the attention of the Secret Service.

"We are aware of the incident, and we are conducting appropriate follow-up," Secret Service spokesman Brian Leary says.

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7:52am

Wed April 18, 2012
The Two-Way

Pentagon Condemns Actions Of Soldiers Posing With Suicide Bombers' Remains

Originally published on Wed April 18, 2012 2:21 pm

Photos obtained by the Los Angeles Times that appear to show U.S. Army paratroopers posing with the remains of suicide bombers in Afghanistan "undermine the daily sacrifices of thousands of ISAF troops who continue to serve honorably in Afghanistan," the top U.S.

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3:30pm

Tue April 17, 2012
The Two-Way

Pranksters Put Fake Ensign's Portrait On Pentagon Wall; It Stayed For Months

Originally published on Tue April 17, 2012 6:15 pm

U.S. Naval Institute

The must-read story of the day if you're into practical jokes has to be The Wall Street Journal's piece headlined "Walk The Prank: Secret Story Of Mysterious Portrait At Pentagon."

As Melissa Block and Audie Cornish will explain later on All Things Considered, last year some pranksters hung a portrait on a hall in the Pentagon with a plaque saying it was "Ensign Chuck Hord. USNA circa 1898. Lost at sea 1908."

There is no such person.

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2:25pm

Tue April 17, 2012
The Two-Way

Shifting Into Reverse, Detroit Automakers Lose Some Market Share

A worker assembles a Silverado truck on the assembly line at the GM Flint Assembly plant in Michigan.
Bill Pugliano Getty Images

Chrysler, Ford and General Motors gained market share in the past couple years. Helped by Toyota's much-publicized recalls, the problems that Japanese carmakers faced after last year's earthquake and tsunami, and an improving reputation for the quality of American-made vehicles, Detroit's Big Three grabbed 47 percent of sales last year — up from 45.1 percent in 2010 and 44 percent in 2009.

Our friend Micki Maynard of Changing Gears, though, reports that the Detroit companies' comeback — in terms of market share — may be over.

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1:04pm

Tue April 17, 2012
The Two-Way

At Scandal-Ridden Federal Agency, All Sorts Of Abuses

How bad are things at the General Services Administration, where the scandal over extravagant spending at a Las Vegas conference has led to resignations, firings and could end up with criminal charges for some officials?

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12:03pm

Tue April 17, 2012
The Two-Way

At Least 20 Women Involved In 'Summit Scandal,' Senator Says

The "summit scandal" continues to grow, judging from this story just posted by Reuters:

"Twenty or 21 women were brought back to the hotel in Colombia by U.S. Secret Service agents and members of the U.S. military in an incident last week involving alleged misconduct with prostitutes, U.S. Senator Susan Collins said on Tuesday."

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9:00am

Tue April 17, 2012
The Two-Way

Romney Has 2-Point Lead Over Obama As Gallup 'Tracking Poll' Begins

Originally published on Wed April 18, 2012 6:30 pm

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney on Monday in Boston.
Steven Senne AP

For those who can't get enough of polls about the presidential election, Gallup has fired up its "daily tracking" survey that will follow the levels of support for President Obama and presumed GOP nominee Mitt Romney.

And it begins with:

-- Romney's support among registered voters at 47 percent.

-- Obama's support among registered voters at 45 percent.

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8:45am

Tue April 17, 2012
The Two-Way

Housing Starts Drop, But Building Permits Are Up

There was a 5.8 percent drop in housing starts from February to March, the Census Bureau and Department of Housing and Urban Development just reported.

Bloomberg News says the decline was unexpected and left starts at a five-month low.

Still, the number of starts was up 10.3 percent from March 2011.

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8:25am

Tue April 17, 2012
The Two-Way

Fear Drives China's Oppressive Rule In Tibet, Dalai Lama Says

Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama.
Diptendu Dutta AFP/Getty Images
  • Renee Montagne speaks to the Dalai Lama

China's leaders continue to impose oppressive policies on the people of Tibet out of fear, the Dalai Lama said earlier today on Morning Edition.

They fear what might happen if Tibetans were allowed to live freely and others under Chinese rule started to demand more respect for their rights. That has meant, he said, that "they ignore ... reality and they impose their rules. ... That's the problem."

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7:45am

Tue April 17, 2012
The Two-Way

Pulitzer Jurors Are Shocked That No Fiction Prize Was Awarded

Originally published on Tue April 17, 2012 9:50 am

  • Susan Larson talks with Lynn Neary

One of the surprises from Monday's Pulitzer Prize announcements was the lack of an award in the fiction category. It's the first time since 1977 that the Pulitzer board hasn't given an award for fiction writing.

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7:10am

Tue April 17, 2012
The Two-Way

Space Shuttle Discovery Is On Its Last Flight

Originally published on Wed May 23, 2012 10:51 am

Space shuttle Discovery, mounted atop a 747 shuttle carrier aircraft, flies by the Washington Monument during a flyover of the nation's capital.
Win McNamee Getty Images

After 148 million miles and 365 days in orbit, space shuttle Discovery has completed its final mission. This morning it traveled atop a jumbo jet from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida to the Smithsonian National Air & Space Museum's Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in the Northern Virginian suburbs of Washington, D.C., landing at its new home just after 11 a.m. ET.

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6:05pm

Mon April 16, 2012
The Two-Way

Last Mega Millions Jackpot Ticket Turned In

Lottery officials in Illinois say the third of the three winning tickets in last month's record $656 million Mega Millions jackpot has been turned in.

We'll learn who the winner is on Wednesday, The Associated Press says.

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5:40pm

Mon April 16, 2012
The Two-Way

7 'Great Locations' To See Space Shuttle Discovery Fly By On Tuesday

Discovery is sitting atop NASA's 747 Shuttle Carrier Aircraft, which will fly the shuttle from Florida to Virginia.
Roberto Gonzalez Getty Images

For those who will be in the Washington, D.C., area Tuesday morning and would like to see space shuttle Discovery on the "fly-in" to its retirement home outside the nation's capital, the Smithsonian National Air & Space Museum recommends being in one of these seven "great locations" before 10 a.m. ET:

District of Columbia

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5:05pm

Mon April 16, 2012
The Two-Way

Why Did The Rooster Cross The Road? To Get To A Chicken Restaurant

Gus, who has picked an interesting place to hang out.
WREG-TV

Thank goodness he doesn't know what's going on inside.

Candice Ludlow of member station WKNO today helps All Things Considered ketchup ... er catch up ... on a story that's been cooking for a week or so in Tennessee.

It seems that a big red rooster has been hanging out in front of a restaurant in Collierville, Tenn., for the past few months.

But it's not just any restaurant.

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