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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The Two-Way
7:48 am
Wed August 1, 2012

Indignant In India: Blackouts Have Millions 'Fuming'

Plenty of wires. But where's the juice? This electric pole in Kolkata is typical of many in heavily populated India.
Dibyangshu Sarkar AFP/Getty Images

"Powerless and Clueless" was today's top headline on the Times of India's front page.

India's Economic Times went with "Superpower India, RIP."

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The Two-Way
7:16 am
Wed August 1, 2012

Gore Vidal, In Words

Gore Vidal in 1991. He died Tuesday, at the age of 86.
Central Press Getty Images

The death of writer and cultural critic Gore Vidal on Tuesday, at the age of 86, means many are trying today to capture that man of words' life in just a few phrases:

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The Two-Way
3:10 pm
Tue July 31, 2012

Deal Struck To Avoid Possibility Of Government Shutdown In October

"Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., announced on Tuesday an agreement to avoid a government shutdown shortly before the November election," The Hill writes. "He said he, Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, and President Obama have all agreed to the deal."

Boehner confirmed the news in an email his staff just sent to reporters:

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The Two-Way
1:28 pm
Tue July 31, 2012

Dying Man's Wish To Leave $500 Tip Turns Into Nearly $50,000 Charity

Aaron Collins, who wanted to leave a big tip.
Facebook.com/AaronsLastWish

Originally published on Wed August 1, 2012 10:13 am

This good-news story began on July 9 with a blog post simply titled "My Brother."

Aaron Collins, wrote his brother Seth, "was the type of person that took great joy in unexpected kindness." And before his July 7 death, the nearly 30-year-old Aaron had made a request:

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The Two-Way
11:05 am
Tue July 31, 2012

Romney Aide To Reporters: 'Kiss My ... This Is A Holy Site'

Mitt Romney, at the top right, as he prepared to get into his car even as reporters were shouting questions.
Politico

Originally published on Tue July 31, 2012 2:02 pm

Note: there is a mild obscenity in this post.

We have a feeling this quote will loom large in campaign 2012 lore:

"Kiss my ass; this is a holy site for the Polish people."

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The Two-Way
10:11 am
Tue July 31, 2012

Share Your Stories: Did You Do 'Bedtime Math' Or Something Like It?

A bedtime story is a longtime tradition. What about a math, science or history quiz, though?
George Marks Getty Images

Originally published on Wed August 1, 2012 7:14 am

  • Ashley Milne-Tyte reporting for 'Morning Edition'

Morning Edition catches up today with one New Jersey mom's way of teaching math to her children: bedtime problems "that soon became a beloved routine."

Laura Overdeck, as it says on her Bedtime Math website, "along with her husband, John, started giving math problems to their two older kids. ... [And] when their 2-year-old started hollering for his own math problem, they knew they were onto something."

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The Two-Way
9:23 am
Tue July 31, 2012

Homes Prices Rise, Consumer Spending Flattens

Originally published on Tue July 31, 2012 11:55 am

Two fresh economic indicators:

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The Two-Way
9:00 am
Tue July 31, 2012

Did Twitter Go Too Far? It Suspended Critic Of NBC's Olympics Coverage

Twitter.com

Originally published on Wed August 1, 2012 7:54 am

Update at 1:45 p.m. ET. Adams Has Been Reinstated On Twitter:

Guy Adams just tweeted that "Oh. My Twitter account appears to have been un-suspended. Did I miss much while I was away?"

That doesn't change the thrust of our post. And we haven't heard back from Twitter about his questions regarding the suspension.

Update at 4:23 p.m. ET. Twitter's Response:

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The Two-Way
7:50 am
Tue July 31, 2012

Reports: GOP Lawmakers Blame Five ATF Officials For 'Fast And Furious'

"Republican congressional investigators have concluded that five senior ATF officials ... are collectively responsible for the failed Fast and Furious gun-tracking operation that was 'marred by missteps, poor judgments and inherently reckless strategy,' " the Los Angeles Times reports.

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The Two-Way
7:36 am
Tue July 31, 2012

Massive Failure: 600 Million In India Lose Power; Grid Collapses For Second Day

Passengers waited for trains Tuesday at a railway station in New Delhi. Another grid failure cut power, causing chaos.
Raveendran AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue July 31, 2012 2:38 pm

At day's end in India, after what's been called the "world's biggest blackout" ever, officials were reporting that electric service had been restored to most of the 670 million or so people who lost it on Tuesday.

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The Two-Way
1:04 pm
Mon July 30, 2012

24 Murder Counts, 116 Attempted Murder Counts For Colo. Shooting Suspect

Originally published on Mon July 30, 2012 1:21 pm

Prosecutors in Colorado today charged James Holmes with 24 counts of murder and 116 counts of attempted murder in the July 20 deaths of 12 people and wounding of 58 during a shooting rampage at a movie theater in the Denver suburb of Aurora.

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The Two-Way
11:44 am
Mon July 30, 2012

Colorado Shooting Stories: There Were Many 'Heroes Among Us'

A heart shaped balloon hovered above a memorial for victims outside the Century 16 movie theater in Aurora, Colo., last week.
Joe Raedle Getty Images

Originally published on Thu August 2, 2012 9:15 am

As they're being told, we're pointing to some of the stories about the 12 people who died and the 58 who were wounded when a gunman opened fire on July 20 at a movie theater in Aurora, Colo. Click here to see more. As you see others, please share the links in the comment threads.

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The Two-Way
11:13 am
Mon July 30, 2012

Romney's Words That Outraged Palestinians Were 'Mischaracterized,' Aide Says

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney visited the Western Wall in Jerusalem's old city on Sunday.
Lior Mizrahi Getty Images

Originally published on Sun August 5, 2012 2:00 pm

Reports that Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney said at a fundraiser in Jerusalem that "culture" is among the reasons Israel's economy is much stronger than those in "areas managed by the Palestinian Authority" have led a spokesman for Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to accuse Romney of racism.

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The Two-Way
10:15 am
Mon July 30, 2012

Afghan Reconstruction Projects May Be 'Counterproductive,' Report Warns

At a road project in Qalat, Afghanistan, last summer, U.S. forces were providing security.
U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt.Brian Ferguson Reuters /Landov
  • Former Ambassador Ryan Crocker speaks with Renee Montagne

The rising hopes but still-daunting challenges facing the people of Afghanistan and their allies, most notably the U.S., were underscored again this morning by two new stories:

-- The recently departed U.S. ambassador to Afghanistan, Ryan Crocker, told Morning Edition host Renee Montagne that he does not think Afghans will suffer through another devasting, multi-party civil war after U.S. combat forces are gone in 2014.

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The Two-Way
8:34 am
Mon July 30, 2012

Syrian Conflict: Refugees Race To Escape; Battle Goes On In Aleppo

Syrian refugee children at the refugee camp in Jordan on Sunday.
Khalil Mazraawi AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon July 30, 2012 12:03 pm

  • Anthony Kuhn reporting about Aleppo for 'Morning Edition'

The focus of the battle between the regime of Syrian President Bashar Assad and opposition fighters remains on the city of Aleppo, where it could be a long, deadly fight before either side can claim victory.

Meanwhile, a refugee crisis continues to build:

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The Two-Way
8:02 am
Mon July 30, 2012

Grid Failure In India Cuts Power To 370 Million

Passengers in New Delhi were waiting for trains that couldn't run because of Monday's power outage.
Prakash Singh AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon July 30, 2012 10:31 am

An estimated 370 million people — about 60 million more than live in the U.S. — were without power for at least part of today in northern India because of a massive failure in the country's power grid.

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The Two-Way
7:33 am
Mon July 30, 2012

Long Legal Process Begins For Colorado Shooting Suspect

James Holmes, in an Arapahoe County, Colo., court on July 23.
AP

Originally published on Mon July 30, 2012 8:46 am

  • Kirk Siegler on 'Morning Edition'

Months of pre-trial legal arguments begin in earnest this morning when James Holmes, the man accused of killing 12 people and wounding 58 others in a July 20 shooting rampage at a movie theater in Aurora, Colo., appears in an Arapahoe County, Colo., court.

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The Two-Way
3:00 pm
Fri July 27, 2012

Maryland Police Arrest 'A Joker' They Say Threatened To 'Blow Everybody Up'

A photo released by Prince George's County (Md.) police of the weapons seized.
Prince George's Police Department

Police in Prince George's County, Md., "have arrested a man who [they say] referred to himself as 'a joker' and threatened to shoot people at his former workplace," The Washington Post's The Crime Scene blog writes.

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The Two-Way
2:04 pm
Fri July 27, 2012

One White Buffalo To Get Sacred Name; Death Of Another Still Stirs Anger

The little guy in Connecticut. Saturday, he gets his sacred naming ceremony.
Courtesy of Peter Fay

Originally published on Fri July 27, 2012 6:02 pm

Hundreds of Native Americans are expected to gather Saturday at a former dairy farm in Goshen, Conn., to hold a sacred naming ceremony for what they hope is a rare white buffalo.

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The Two-Way
1:04 pm
Fri July 27, 2012

Amazon's Bezos Enters Gay Marriage Debate With $2.5M Worth Of Support

Mackenzie Bezos and Jeff Bezos.
Larry Busacca Getty Images

Fast food's Chick-fil-A has been at the center of the culture wars in recent days because of company President Dan Cathy's outspoken opposition to gay marriage.

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The Two-Way
12:04 pm
Fri July 27, 2012

CNN Chief Jim Walton Stepping Down

Originally published on Fri July 27, 2012 12:18 pm

Saying that the cable news network "needs new thinking," CNN Worldwide President Jim Walton told his staff today that he's stepping down at the end of the year.

In a memo, he said:

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The Two-Way
11:17 am
Fri July 27, 2012

Hubig Pies, Landmark New Orleans Bakery, Has Burned Down

Fresh Hubig pies read for delivery in 2007.
Alex Brandon AP

Originally published on Fri July 27, 2012 11:39 am

A bakery that's been producing hand-size, fried fruit pies for hungry folks in and around New Olreans since 1922 is "a total loss" after a blaze today, city fire officials tell The Times-Picayune.

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The Two-Way
9:54 am
Fri July 27, 2012

Stories Of The Colorado Victims: Young Artist Was 'Ball Of Joy'

Alexander "AJ" Boik in an undated photo provided by his family.
AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri July 27, 2012 6:02 pm

As they're told, we're pointing to some of the stories about the 12 people who died and the 58 who were wounded when a gunman opened fire on July 20 at a movie theater in Aurora, Colo. Click here to see more. As you see others, please share the links in the comment threads.

-- "AJ" Boik, Wanted Everyone To Be Happy:

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The Two-Way
8:22 am
Fri July 27, 2012

Derecho, The Sequel: Storm Roars Over Pennsylvania And New York

Broken trees lying across a truck in Elmira, N.Y., after Thursday's storm.
Heather Ainsworth AP

It didn't leave behind as much destruction or as many downed power lines as the storm that rolled over states from the Midwest through the Mid-Atlantic on June 30, but some news outlets are saying the summer's second derecho struck on Thursday.

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