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
7:27 am
Thu July 12, 2012

Was There A Coverup? Report On Penn State Scandal May Tell Us

Former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky being led away from court after his conviction last month.
Mark Wilson Getty Images

Originally published on Thu July 12, 2012 4:36 pm

  • NPR's Tom Goldman on what's expected in the Freeh report

In a scathing report that takes to task former head football coach Joe Paterno and other top Penn State officials, an independent report from investigators led by former FBI director Louis Freeh says there was a "total disregard for the safety and welfare" of Jerry Sandusky's child victims "by the most senior leaders" at the school.

That is "our most saddening and sobering finding," Freeh concludes about his investigation into the scandal that rocked the school last year.

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The Two-Way
2:31 pm
Wed July 11, 2012

An Amazing Life: Robert de La Rochefoucauld, World War II Saboteur

Amazon.com

Originally published on Wed July 11, 2012 2:32 pm

As brother Jim Memmott tweeted: "Good heavens, what a life."

Read this New York Times obituary of Robert de La Rochefoucauld and we bet you'll say something like that too. As the Times writes, in World War II the French count's exploits as an agent for the British:

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The Two-Way
12:37 pm
Wed July 11, 2012

Heir To Billions May Have Lived With Wife's Body For Days In Britain

Eva Rausing, right, and her husband Hans Kristian Rausing in 1996.
Alan Davidson AP

"Detectives are investigating whether one of the heirs to the Tetra Pak drinks carton fortune lived with his wife's body for up to a week after her death in their Belgravia mansion in London," The Guardian reports.

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The Two-Way
11:15 am
Wed July 11, 2012

Heartbreak Again As 520 More Genocide Victims Are Buried In Srebrenica

Earlier today, a woman cried next to the coffin of her relative at the Potocari memorial complex near Srebrenica.
Marko Drobnjakovic AP

On this "17th anniversary of Europe's worst massacre since World War II," 30,000 people gathered in Srebrenica, Bosnia-Herzegovina, today to bury 520 more victims of the 1995 slaughter there.

And as The Associated Press says, "the annual ritual was as heartbreaking as ever."

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The Two-Way
10:01 am
Wed July 11, 2012

Romney To NAACP: If You Knew My Heart, I Would Get Your Vote

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney during his address to the NAACP's annual convention this morning in Houston.
Evan Vucci AP

Originally published on Wed July 11, 2012 11:53 am

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney told the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People this morning that his policies would be good for all Americans and that those of President Obama have not helped the nation's poorest people.

And, he told delegates to the NAACP's annual convention in Houston, "if it were possible to fully communicate what I believe is in the real, enduring best interest of African-American families, you would vote for me for president."

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The Two-Way
9:36 am
Wed July 11, 2012

JPMorgan Will Move To 'Claw Back' Millions From Execs Who Bungled Billions

Another kind of claws at work. Meanwhile, JPMorgan is going to see if legal steps will let it "clawback" some money paid to executives.
John MacDougall AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed July 11, 2012 10:20 am

JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon predicted this would happen: The bank "plans to reclaim millions of dollars in stock from executives at the center of the trading blunder that shocked Wall Street," The Wall Street Journal reports

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The Two-Way
8:32 am
Wed July 11, 2012

Holy Cow! Family Finds Baseball Card Collection That May Fetch $3 Million

Two of the most valuable cards in the collection: Ty Cobb (left) and Honus "Hans" Wagner.
Heritage Auctions

Originally published on Wed July 11, 2012 5:33 pm

"My grandfather stuck it in the attic a hundred years ago and here it is now, a blessing to his grandchildren."

A blessing for sure.

As the Toledo Blade reports, when Karl Kissner and his cousins were clearing out his grandfather's home in Defiance, Ohio, on Feb. 29 they came across a box of very rare and very valuable baseball cards.

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The Two-Way
7:22 am
Wed July 11, 2012

Episcopal Church OKs Same-Sex Blessings; Largest U.S. Denomination To Do So

The rings of Michael Johnson and Michael Roberts of New York City stood ready before their marriage ceremony at the Manhattan City Clerk's Office in July 2011.
Craig Ruttle AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed July 11, 2012 11:54 am

With a vote Tuesday evening by its House of Deputies, the Episcopal Church became the largest U.S. denomination so far "to officially sanction same-sex relationships," as CNN's Belief blog writes.

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The Two-Way
1:39 pm
Tue July 10, 2012

Is Kim Jong Un's Mystery Woman The 'Excellent Horse-Like Lady?'

In this photo released by the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) and distributed in Tokyo by the Korea News Service on Monday, July 9, 2012, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, right, and a woman clap with others on Friday as they watch a performance by North Korea's new Moranbong band in Pyongyang. Observers think she is Hyon Song-wol.
AP

Originally published on Wed July 11, 2012 11:31 am

It seems that North Korea's young leader may have reconnected with an old love.

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The Two-Way
11:09 am
Tue July 10, 2012

Even As Jobless Rate Stays High, Job Openings Continue To Grow

Applicants wait to enter a job fair in New York City last month.
John Moore Getty Images

Originally published on Tue July 10, 2012 11:59 am

There were 3.6 million jobs open and ready to be filled in May if the right candidates came along, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported this morning.

That was up from 3.4 million in April, was the second-most for any month so far this year and was up 16 percent from the 3.1 million in May 2011.

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The Two-Way
10:07 am
Tue July 10, 2012

Listen: You Can Hear The Northern Lights, Researchers Say

The northern lights over Tromsoe, northern Norway, on Jan. 24, 2012.
Rune Stoltz Bertinussen AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue July 10, 2012 11:21 am

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The Two-Way
9:38 am
Tue July 10, 2012

'USA Today' Names New Editor

Originally published on Tue July 10, 2012 10:05 am

David Callaway, editor-in-chief at MarketWatch, was this morning named to be editor-in-chief at USA Today.

There, he will be teamed up again with Larry Kramer — the newspaper's new publisher. Kramer founded MarketWatch.

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The Two-Way
8:53 am
Tue July 10, 2012

With 15-Minute Session, Egypt's Parliament Defies High Court

The scene inside the Egyptian parliament in Cairo earlier today during the lawmakers' short session.
AFP/Getty Images

The power struggle between the military leaders who have been running Egypt since the spring 2011 toppling of President Hosni Mubarak and newly elected lawmakers escalated further today.

Members of parliament's lower house met in defiance of an order from the nation's highest court to disband.

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The Two-Way
8:15 am
Tue July 10, 2012

As Annan Seeks Help From Iran, Activists Say Syrian Death Toll Exceeds 17,000

In February, these Syrians mourned over the fresh grave of a relative following a funeral for victims killed in violence in Idlib.
Bulent Kilic AFP/Getty Images

Iran must be "part of the solution" to the crisis in Syria, former U.N. Secretary-General Koffi Annan said today in Tehran.

But as Annan spoke, there was new word about how horrible things have gotten in Syria since protests against the regime of President Bashar Assad began in March 2011 and forces loyal to Assad cracked down on his opponents.

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The Two-Way
7:30 am
Tue July 10, 2012

Wildfire In Southern Idaho Is Growing Quickly

The view from above: A satellite image of Idaho and western Montana, taken Monday and posted by the USDA Forest Services's Active Fire Mapping website, showing smoke and clouds.
USDA Forest Service

Though firefighters have "gained ground on a number of wildfires across the West," they're having trouble in southern Idaho, The Associated Press reports.

There, winds have "fanned a fast-moving blaze across nearly 300 square miles of sagebrush and dry grass," the wire service says. The fire began Saturday. It was apparently sparked by a lightning strike.

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The Two-Way
2:10 pm
Mon July 9, 2012

2.97 Million And Counting; '66 Volvo Is Nearing Its 3 Millionth Mile

Irv Gordon in his trusty Volvo P1800S earlier this month.
Seth Wenig AP

"It's just a car I enjoy driving."

That's for sure.

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The Two-Way
11:33 am
Mon July 9, 2012

Romney Raised $106 Million In June; Obama Raised $71 Million

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney on July 4 in Wolfeboro, N.H.
Kayana Szymczak Getty Images

For the second month in a row, Republican presidential contender Mitt Romney and his party have raised more money than the Democratic incumbent, President Obama.

Romney and his fellow Republicans hauled in $106 million in June for his presidential campaign, well above the $71 million raised by the president's campaign and Democrats. Both campaigns released their fundraising figures for the month earlier today.

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The Two-Way
10:21 am
Mon July 9, 2012

'Mystery Woman' And Disney Ripoffs: Latest News About North Korea's Leader

An image from a video posted by StimmeKoreas, which in turn came from North Korea official media, showing some of the dancing (fake) Disney characters at Friday's performance.
YouTube.com

Originally published on Mon July 9, 2012 10:29 am

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The Two-Way
8:02 am
Mon July 9, 2012

In Afghanistan: Bomb Kills Six Americans; Shocking Video Of Woman's Execution

A screen grab from the video of a public execution reportedly carried out last month in Afghanistan. The victim is sitting with her back to the executioner, who is at left.
Agence France Presse

Originally published on Mon July 9, 2012 11:16 am

"In what was an extraordinarily violent day even by Afghan standards, separate incidents on Sunday killed seven Western troops, including six Americans who died in a single blast, along with five Afghan police officers and at least 18 civilians," the Los Angeles Times writes.

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The Two-Way
7:09 am
Mon July 9, 2012

Ahhh! Some Relief From The Heat

Dancing in the rain: New York City got some relief from the heat as early as Saturday, when this young woman danced in the rain in Times Square.
John Minchillo AP

The oppressive heat wave that blanketed much of the nation for nearly two weeks, causing at least 46 deaths, has finally eased.

As The Associated Press writes:

"The cooler air began sweeping southward Sunday in the eastern half of the country, bringing down some temperatures by 15 or more degrees from Saturday's highs, which topped 100 in cities including Philadelphia, Washington, St. Louis, Indianapolis and Louisville, Ky."

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The Two-Way
3:11 pm
Fri July 6, 2012

Zimmerman Posts Bond, Is Released

George Zimmerman during a court hearing on June 29.
Joe Burbank AP

One day after a Florida judge set his new bail at $1 million, accused killer George Zimmerman is out of jail after posting a bond.

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The Two-Way
1:46 pm
Fri July 6, 2012

Hot Damn! It's National Fried Chicken Day

Celebrating the day.
Steve Parsons PA Photos /Landov

Originally published on Fri July 6, 2012 2:23 pm

Someone please tell us, because we've searched and can't find the answer: Who decided this is National Fried Chicken Day?

It apparently is, judging from all the stories, Web posts and tweets we're seeing.

It's why the Los Angeles Times is offering up "Fried Chicken Five Ways" — five recipes, from classic buttermilk-battered to Korean.

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The Two-Way
11:33 am
Fri July 6, 2012

How Hot Is It? All You Need To See Are These Two Maps

"Papa B" (left) and "Cadillac Bob" find refuge from the heat in a shaded lot between their homes on Chicago's South Side.
Sitthixay Ditthavong AP

Originally published on Fri July 6, 2012 2:11 pm

The heat wave across much of the nation continues.

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