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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It's All Politics
5:36 pm
Thu October 11, 2012

Here's Where To Get 'Fact Checks' Tonight

Just as they did before, during and after last week's presidential debate, the fact checkers will be up and running for tonight's vice presidential debate:

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The Two-Way
2:57 pm
Thu October 11, 2012

'Softball-Sized Eyeball' Washes Up In Florida; Can You I.D. It?

Quite a baby blue.
Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission

Originally published on Mon October 15, 2012 8:41 am

Tell us you can resist clicking on this headline from Florida's Sun Sentinel:

"Huge Eyeball From Unknown Creature Washes Ashore On Florida Beach."

It's big, it's blue and the newspaper says "among the possibilities being discussed are a giant squid, some other large fish or a whale or other large marine mammal."

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission has sent the eye off for study.

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The Two-Way
1:27 pm
Thu October 11, 2012

Panda Cub's Death Due To 'Lung And Liver Damage'

Mei Xiang at the National Zoo earlier today. Her cub died last month.
Rod Lamkey Jr. The Washington Times /Landov

The giant panda cub born at Washington's National Zoo did, as first suspected, die on Sept. 23 because of "lung and liver damage" stemming from problems with her development, zoo officials say.

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The Two-Way
1:16 pm
Wed October 10, 2012

'Human Hamster Wheel' Sinks; Here's Video Of How It Used To Work

The hamster wheel, before she sank.
Facebook.com/IrishSeaCrossing

Originally published on Wed October 10, 2012 4:57 pm

As our friends at All Things Considered say, "it's been a frustrating week for daredevils."

Felix Baumgartner had to postpone his attempt to rise 23 miles high in the sky and then jump from a balloon to see if he can break the speed of sound on the way down.

And maybe you haven't heard, but Chris Todd had to give on his "walk" across the Irish Sea in a human hamster wheel.

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The Two-Way
11:30 am
Wed October 10, 2012

Sharp Criticism, Some Words In Defense At Hearing On Benghazi Attack

Originally published on Wed October 10, 2012 4:57 pm

Two very different views from two different witnesses today as the House House Oversight and Government Reform Committee opened its probe into the Sept. 11 attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, in which ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans were killed.

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The Two-Way
10:03 am
Wed October 10, 2012

Member Of Russia's Pussy Riot Freed; Two Others Remain In Jail

Yekaterina Samutsevich of Pussy Riot after her release from prison today in Moscow.
Natalia Kolesnikova AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed October 10, 2012 10:06 am

One member of the Russian punk band Pussy Riot was set free by a Moscow court today. But two others who were given two-year prison sentences after being convicted of "hooliganism connected to 'religious hatred' " will remain in prison.

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The Two-Way
8:57 am
Wed October 10, 2012

Reports: Alex Karras, Former NFL Star And Actor, Dies

Alex Karras of the Detroit Lions in 1971.
AP

Originally published on Wed October 10, 2012 9:36 am

Alex Karras, who was a star defensive lineman for the Detroit Lions in the 1960s and went on to gain other fame for his acting in Hollywood's Blazing Saddles and TV's Webster, has died, according to multiple reports.

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The Two-Way
7:08 am
Wed October 10, 2012

Successful Surgery For Pakistani Girl Whose Shooting Has Caused Outrage

The front page of today's The News, in Karachi, Pakistan.
TheNews.com.pk

Originally published on Wed October 10, 2012 8:12 am

  • Philip Reeves, reporting on 'Morning Edition'

After several hours of surgery, the girl whose shooting by the Taliban has caused deep anger in Pakistan and has exposed that nation's "deepest fault line," is said to be in stable condition.

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The Two-Way
6:14 am
Wed October 10, 2012

Jack Welch Says He Was 'Right About That Strange Jobs Report'

Former General Electric CEO Jack Welch.
Thomas Lohnes AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed October 10, 2012 6:52 am

When former General Electric CEO Jack Welch tweeted on Friday that the drop in the unemployment rate last month was "unbelievable" and that President Obama and his campaign aides "will do anything ... can't debate so change numbers," he aligned himself with conspiracy theorists who were asking if some sort of "October surprise" had been pulled.

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The Two-Way
5:08 am
Wed October 10, 2012

Chemistry Nobel Goes To Scientists Who Studied Body's Receptors

This year's winners of the Chemistry Nobel: Robert Lefkowitz (left) and Brian Kobilka.
NobelPrize.org

Americans Robert Lefkowitz and Brian Kobilka have been awarded the 2012 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for their "groundbreaking discoveries" about the "fine-tuned system of interactions between billions of cells" in the human body, the Nobel Prize committee announced this morning.

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The Two-Way
11:38 am
Tue October 9, 2012

Taliban Say They Shot 14-Year-Old Pakistani Girl Who Exposed Their Cruelty

Malala Yousufzai on a stretcher as she was being taken to a hospital earlier today in Mingora, Pakistan.
AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed October 10, 2012 5:16 am

"Shooting attacks happen every day in Pakistan," as NPR's Philip Reeves reports from Islamabad.

But the shooting of a teenaged girl who became nationally known after she documented the Taliban's cruelty in Pakistan's Swat Valley has caused particular shock in that country, he tells our Newscast Desk.

The Pakistani Taliban are claiming their fighters carried out today's attack. According to Philip, "officials say Malala Yousufzai was outside her school when a gunman approached, and opened fire, injuring her and at least one other child."

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The Two-Way
10:31 am
Tue October 9, 2012

VIDEO: Australia's Prime Minister Doesn't Hold Back As She Rips Opponent

Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard delivering her verbal takedown of the opposition.
ABCNews (of Australia)

Originally published on Wed October 10, 2012 5:59 am

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The Two-Way
8:27 am
Tue October 9, 2012

NPR Names New Executive Editor

Madhulika Sikka.
Doby Photography NPR

Madhulika Sikka, who has been Morning Edition's executive producer since joining NPR six years ago, will become the organization's executive editor in January.

In announcing the promotion this morning, NPR Senior Vice President for News Margaret Low Smith lauded Sikka's work at Morning Edition, saying she "brought real vision" to the show and that it has "evolved into a more interesting and relevant program" under her leadership.

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The Two-Way
7:10 am
Tue October 9, 2012

Risks Of Global Economic Slowdown Are 'Alarmingly High,' IMF Warns

In China's Anhui province, a worker unloads steel bars at a factory. A slowdown in China and other major nations threatens to pull the global economy into recession, the International Monetary Fund warns.
AFP/Getty Images

Saying that the global economic recovery "has suffered new setbacks, and uncertainty weighs heavily on the outlook," the International Monetary Fund today warned that the probability of "recession in advanced economies and a serious slowdown in emerging market and developing economies" next year have gone up.

The fund said its research indicates the risk of those things occurring in 2013 "has risen to about 17 percent, up from about 4 percent in April 2012."

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The Two-Way
6:04 am
Tue October 9, 2012

In Mexico: Cartel Leader May Be Dead, Key Lieutenant Captured

Sept. 1, 2010: Police stood guard by a truck containing some of the bodies of immigrants killed by members of the Zetas drug cartel in Tamaulipas state.
Jorge Dan Xinhua /Landov

"Top Zetas drug cartel leader Heriberto Lazcano has apparently been killed in a firefight with marines in the northern border state of Coahuila, the Mexican navy said late Monday."

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The Two-Way
5:04 am
Tue October 9, 2012

30 Years In Jail — At A Minimum — For Seemingly Unrepentant Sandusky

Former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky as he walked to the courthouse this morning in Bellefonte, Pa.
Patrick Smith Getty Images

Originally published on Tue October 9, 2012 9:17 am

Saying that the former Penn State assistant football coach had assaulted not only 10 young boys' bodies but also their "psyches and souls," a Pennsylvania judge this morning sentenced Jerry Sandusky to between 30 and 60 years in prison for the sexual abuse of those children.

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The Two-Way
3:57 am
Tue October 9, 2012

French And American Scientists Share Physics Nobel

Inventas vitam juvat excoluisse per artes' loosely translated 'And they who bettered life on earth by their newly found mastery.' "" href="/post/french-and-american-scientists-share-physics-nobel" class="noexit lightbox">
The medal for the Nobel in Physics. According to the Nobel committee, the inscription reads: " 'Inventas vitam juvat excoluisse per artes' loosely translated 'And they who bettered life on earth by their newly found mastery.' "
NobelPrize.org

Originally published on Tue October 9, 2012 6:07 am

The 2012 Nobel Prize in Physics has been awarded to Serge Haroche of France and David Wineland of the United States for their work on the "fundamental interactions between light particles and matter."

"The Nobel laureates have opened the door to a new era of experimentation with quantum physics by demonstrating the direct observation of individual quantum particles without destroying them," the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences said in a statement.

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The Two-Way
8:35 am
Fri October 5, 2012

Court Clears Way For Terror Suspect To Be Sent From U.K. To U.S.

"After a legal battle covering several years in each case, five suspected terrorists, including radical cleric Abu Hamza al-Masri will be extradited to the U.S, U.K. judges have ruled." And, the BBC adds, Britain's Home Office "said it welcomed the High Court's decision. 'We are now working to extradite these men as quickly as possible,' a spokesman said."

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The Two-Way
8:19 am
Fri October 5, 2012

Labor Secretary Says Talk Of Fudged Jobless Numbers Is Insulting

Labor Secretary Hilda Solis.
Kevork Djansezian Getty Images

The news that the nation's jobless rate fell to 7.8 percent in September from 8.1 percent in August immediately led some of President Obama's critics to charge the the books had been cooked to help his reelection campaign.

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The Two-Way
6:44 am
Fri October 5, 2012

Unemployment Rate Drops To 7.8 Percent; 114,000 Jobs Added To Payrolls

Originally published on Fri October 5, 2012 9:27 am

The nation's unemployment rate fell to 7.8 percent in September from 8.1 percent in August even though just 114,000 jobs were added to private and public payrolls, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports.

Those hard-to-reconcile figures — a decline in the jobless rate even though job growth was relatively weak — appear to be at least partly explained by a sharp increase in the number of Americans who found part-time jobs and counted themselves as employed.

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The Two-Way
6:24 am
Fri October 5, 2012

Sacre Bleu! French Bees' Taste For M&Ms Makes For Colored Honey

We knew the Honey Nut Cheerios bee liked sweet stuff. But imagine what would happen if he met green M&M?
Doug Kanter/Rusty Jarrett AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri October 5, 2012 9:32 am

Why were their bees producing honey in shades of blue and green, wondered beekeepers in the Alsace region of France?

The answer, according to France 24 and Le Monde, was that the bees apparently like M&M's.

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The Two-Way
5:45 am
Fri October 5, 2012

Romney: I Was 'Just Completely Wrong' On 47 Percent

Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney during a rally in Fishersville, Va., on Thursday.
Jewel Samad AFP/Getty Images

Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney's much-discussed remarks about the 47 percent of Americans who "will vote for the president no matter what ... believe that they are victims ... [and] pay no income tax" did not come up in Wednesday night's debate with President Obama.

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The Two-Way
5:18 am
Fri October 5, 2012

Reports: Two Suspects In Libyan Attack Detained In Turkey

Damage inside the burnt U.S. consulate in Benghazi after an attack on the building Sept. 11.
Gianluigi Guercia Getty Images

"Turkish media are reporting the apprehension of two suspects in the Sept. 11 attack that killed the U.S. ambassador to Libya," NPR's Peter Kenyon reports from Istanbul.

He tells our Newscast Desk that:

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The Two-Way
3:46 pm
Thu October 4, 2012

FBI Team Spends 12 Hours In Benghazi

Three weeks after the attack on the U.S. consulate that left U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans dead, a team of FBI investigators got to the site in Benghazi, Libya, on Wednesday and departed today after about 12 hours on the ground, The Associated Press reports.

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The Two-Way
2:33 pm
Thu October 4, 2012

Go To Jail For A Retweet? Filipino Lawmaker Tries To Ease Concern

Does he need to watch what he likes? Facebook's logo is reflected in the glasses of a student in Manila.
Ted Aljibe AFP/Getty Images

This headline at Global Post is an eye-opener:

"Philippines: Click 'like,' go to prison. Cybercrime law threatens 12 years behind bars for 'liking' or re-Tweeting libel."

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The Two-Way
12:16 pm
Thu October 4, 2012

Friday's Jobs Report Is Campaign's Next Key Moment, Here's What To Expect

The welcome sign at a job fair earlier this year in Washington, D.C.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

With the first presidential debate now behind us, what's the next big item on the campaign calendar?

It's Friday's 8:30 a.m. ET release from the Bureau of Labor Statistics about the September unemployment rate and how many jobs were added to payrolls last month.

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The Two-Way
11:09 am
Thu October 4, 2012

Rush Fans, It's Time To Rock: Band's Been Nominated To The Hall Of Fame

Rush guitarist Alex Lifeson (left) and singer/bassist Geddy Lee.
Ethan Miller Getty Images

Originally published on Thu October 4, 2012 12:37 pm

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The Two-Way
10:00 am
Thu October 4, 2012

KitchenAid Apologizes For 'Offensive Tweet' About Obama's Grandmother

While he was attending Columbia University in New York City, Barack Obama's maternal grandparents — Stanley and Madelyn Dunham — visited him there. The president lived with them in Hawaii for much of his youth.
Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Thu October 4, 2012 3:00 pm

Appliance maker KitchenAid quickly deleted and apologized for a message that went out on its Twitter account during last night's presidential debate because the comment about President Obama and his grandmother was so offensive.

The comment writer — who has not been identified — picked up on the president's mention of his grandmother and tweeted that:

"Obamas gma even knew it was going 2 b bad! 'She died 3 days b4 he became president'."

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It's All Politics
10:31 pm
Wed October 3, 2012

Romney Goes On Offense, Pays For It In First Wave Of Fact Checks

Originally published on Thu October 4, 2012 5:03 am

In their first of three debates, President Obama and Republican challenger Mitt Romney "traded barbs" and stretched some facts, say the nonpartisan watchdogs at PolitiFact.com.

Similarly, the researchers at the Annenberg Public Policy Center's FactCheck.org found examples of truth-stretching by both men.

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