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.

Pages

The Two-Way
7:40 am
Mon January 21, 2013

As It Happened: Obama Asks Americans To Carry 'Light Of Freedom'

President Obama taking the oath of office today on the steps of the Capitol. First Lady Michelle Obama held the two Bibles on which he placed his hand.
Alex Wong Getty Images

Originally published on Mon January 21, 2013 5:25 pm

  • NPR Special Coverage: 10 a.m.-11 a.m.
  • NPR Special Coverage: 11 a.m.-12:40 p.m.
  • NPR Special Coverage: 12:40 p.m.-2 p.m.

Calling on Americans to "answer the call of history, and carry into an uncertain future that precious light of freedom," President Obama used his second inaugural address to push for action on the nation's problems and to say that partisan politics should not get in the way of pragmatism.

Read more
The Two-Way
5:48 am
Mon January 21, 2013

Katie Couric Lands Manti Te'o 'Exclusive'

Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te'o before the BCS National Championship game against Alabama on Jan. 7 in Miami.
Marc Serota UPI /Landov

Originally published on Mon January 21, 2013 7:09 am

The big "get" goes to Katie Couric.

While Notre Dame football star Manti Te'o has spoken to ESPN — and said he did not participate in the hoax about a "dead" girlfriend who turned out to be neither real nor dead — that wasn't on camera or recorded.

Read more
The Two-Way
5:32 am
Mon January 21, 2013

Top Stories: Inauguration Day; 'MLK' Day; And The Super Bowl Is Set

Good morning.

It's Inauguration Day in the U.S., and that's going to require much of our attention today. But as always, there is other news.

Our early headlines:

-- Join Us For Coverage Of Inauguration Day; Here's The Schedule

-- Reports: Death Toll In Algeria At 80

Read more
The Two-Way
5:07 am
Mon January 21, 2013

Reports: Death Toll In Algeria At 80

Smoke rose Sunday during demining operations at the gas plant in eastern Algeria that Islamist militants attacked last week.
Louafi Larbi Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Mon January 21, 2013 11:54 am

Update at 1:50 p.m. ET: Three Americans Were Killed, State Department Says (See Statement Below).

Our original post:

As feared, the reports from Algeria about the number of people killed during last week's hostage crisis at a gas plant are getting grimmer.

Read more
The Two-Way
4:37 am
Mon January 21, 2013

Super Bowl Will Be A Family Affair: Harbaugh Brothers' Ravens, 49ers To Clash

Head coach Jim Harbaugh (left) of the San Francisco 49ers and his brother, head coach John Harbaugh of the Baltimore Ravens, before a game on Thanksgiving Day 2011. Their teams will meet again in the Super Bowl.
Rob Carr Getty Images
  • From 'Morning Edition': NPR's Mike Pesca on the Ravens' win

Super Bowl XLVII will be a never-before matchup of teams coached by two brothers.

The Baltimore Ravens, led by John Harbaugh, will play his younger brother Jim's San Francisco 49ers on Feb. 3 in New Orleans.

Maybe it should be called the Harbowl, as they're saying on NFL.com.

Read more
The Two-Way
3:53 am
Mon January 21, 2013

Join Us For Coverage Of Inauguration Day; Here's The Schedule

Souvenirs are available in Washington, D.C., as the city celebrates the inauguration.
Joe Raedle Getty Images

Originally published on Mon January 21, 2013 8:32 am

Good morning.

Though he and the vice president have already taken their oaths of office, President Obama is due this noon to stand outside the Capitol for his ceremonial swearing in and then to deliver his second inaugural address.

Read more
The Two-Way
1:34 pm
Fri January 18, 2013

Republicans Offer Three-Month Increase In Debt Ceiling

As workers prepare the Capitol for Monday's inaugural ceremony, there's word that Congress might not get into another battle over the debt ceiling.
Kevin Dietsch UPI /Landov

In a move that could head off another bruising battle over increasing the nation's debt ceiling, GOP leaders in the House plan to approve a three-month increase in the nation's borrowing authority next week, NPR's S.V. Date reports.

But, he tells our Newscast Desk, Republicans want to tie a longer-term increase to the passage of a budget that cuts spending.

His report continues:

"The plan comes from Majority Leader Eric Cantor as House Republicans wrap up a retreat in Southern Virginia.

Read more
The Two-Way
1:34 pm
Fri January 18, 2013

Listen Carefully Or You'll Miss It: We've Got Justice Thomas On Tape

Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas.
Jim Lo Scalzo EPA /Landov
  • Justice Thomas' voice comes in around the 13-second mark

As it does each Friday, the Supreme Court has released audio recordings of the week's oral arguments.

Which means we can now hear what it was like when Justice Clarence Thomas broke his seven-year silence.

Read more
The Two-Way
1:18 pm
Fri January 18, 2013

More Tears For Notre Dame's 'Fake Tragedy' Than A Real Girl's Death?

Lizzy Seeberg, in a family photo broadcast by ABC News.
ABCNews.go.com

Originally published on Fri January 18, 2013 4:03 pm

The bizarre story of Notre Dame star linebacker Manti Te'o and the girlfriend he now says never existed has exploded on to news sites and TV channels this week.

Read more
The Two-Way
9:36 am
Fri January 18, 2013

Body Exhumed Of Lottery Winner Who Suffered Cyanide-Related Death

Urooj Khan, with his winning lottery ticket. Not long after this photo was taken, he was dead.
AP

The remains of Urooj Khan, the Chicago man who last July died one day after his $425,000 check from the Illinois lottery was cut, were exhumed today, the Chicago Tribune reports.

Read more
The Two-Way
8:52 am
Fri January 18, 2013

American Confirmed Dead In Algerian Hostage Crisis

Originally published on Fri January 18, 2013 6:56 pm

(We updated the top of this post at 8:55 ET.)

An American worker has been confirmed dead at the natural gas complex in eastern Algeria where Islamic extremists seized hostages, the U.S. State Department said Friday evening in a statement.

The State Department identified the man as Frederick Buttaccio, a Texas resident, but did not provide additional details on the circumstances.

Read more
The Two-Way
8:47 am
Fri January 18, 2013

Acid Thrown In Face Of Bolshoi Ballet's Artistic Director; He May Lose Sight

Sergei Filin, artistic director of the Bolshoi ballet, in 2011.
Yuri Kadobnov AFP/Getty Images

A masked assailant threw acid into the face of the Bolshoi ballet's artistic director on Thursday in Moscow in what may have been a "reprisal for his selection of dancers in starring roles at the famed Russian company," The Associated Press reports.

Read more
The Two-Way
7:41 am
Fri January 18, 2013

Te'o Spoke Of 'Girlfriend' As If She Existed After He Supposedly Learned Of Hoax

Manti Te'o, pointing skyward during Notre Dame's game against Michigan on Sept. 22. That was the day, he said then, of his girlfriend's funeral service. Now, he says he never met her and they had only an online and telephone relationship.
Jonathan Daniel Getty Images

Originally published on Fri January 18, 2013 8:53 am

Notre Dame football star Manti Te'o "perpetuated the heartbreaking story" of a girlfriend's death after he supposedly had learned he was the victim of a hoax and that she never existed, The Associated Press writes.

Read more
The Two-Way
6:18 am
Fri January 18, 2013

Livestrong 'Disappointed' By Lance Armstrong, But Still Grateful To Him

Lance Armstrong, during the interview with Oprah Winfrey that was recorded Monday and began airing Thursday night.
George Burns/Oprah Winfrey Network Getty Images

Originally published on Fri January 18, 2013 3:09 pm

After Part 1 of cyclist Lance Armstrong's confession about doping aired Thursday night on the Oprah Winfrey Network, the Livestrong cancer charity he helped found released a statement that says, in part:

Read more
The Two-Way
12:09 pm
Thu January 17, 2013

'Dear Abby' Dies; Pauline Phillips Was Adviser To Millions

Pauline Phillips — Dear Abby — in 2001.
Fred Prouser Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Thu January 17, 2013 12:52 pm

Pauline Phillips, known to millions of advice-seekers around the world as the original "Dear Abby," has died. She was 94.

The company that syndicates Dear Abby says on its website that she "died Wednesday ... in Minneapolis after a long battle with Alzheimer's disease."

Read more
The Two-Way
9:04 am
Thu January 17, 2013

Top Stories: Hostage Crisis In Algeria; Gun Debate Continues

The Two-Way
8:02 am
Thu January 17, 2013

Olympics Asks Lance Armstrong To Return His Bronze Medal

Lance Armstrong at the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games, celebrating his bronze medal performance.
Pedro Ugarte AFP/Getty Images

As those who care wait anxiously for Part 1 of cycling superstar Lance Armstrong's confessional with Oprah Winfrey, there's word that the International Olympic Committee has asked Armstrong to return the bronze medal he won at the 2000 Olympics.

The IOC's statement says:

Read more
The Two-Way
7:31 am
Thu January 17, 2013

Manti Te'o: Story Attributed To Parents Hard To Reconcile With Hoax Report

Manti T'eo.
Jonathan Daniel Getty Images

Originally published on Thu January 17, 2013 12:53 pm

If you're trying to make sense of the news that Notre Dame football star Manti Te'o now says he was the victim of a hoax and that the woman he thought was his "girlfriend" never existed and never died, you'll want to read an Oct. 12 story published by the South Bend Tribune.

Read more
The Two-Way
6:42 am
Thu January 17, 2013

Jobless Claims At Five-Year Low; Home Building Hit Five-Year High In 2012

Going up in Chicago: Row houses under construction.
Scott Olson Getty Images

Originally published on Thu January 17, 2013 12:53 pm

There were 335,000 first-time claims for unemployment insurance last week, down 37,000 from the week before, the Employment and Training Administration reports.

That's the lowest total for any one week since January 2008.

Read more
The Two-Way
5:23 am
Thu January 17, 2013

In Algeria: Some Hostages May Have Escaped

Algerian men look at national newspapers headlining the terrorist attack and kidnapping in Amenas at a news stand in Algiers on Thursday.
Ouahab Hebbat AP

Originally published on Thu January 17, 2013 2:57 pm

Events are happening quickly at the gas facility in eastern Algeria where Islamist militants seized a large group of hostages — perhaps as many as 41 of them foreigners who apparently include some Americans — on Wednesday.

Read more
The Two-Way
12:45 pm
Wed January 16, 2013

Conrad Bain, Mr. Drummond On 'Diff'rent Strokes,' Dies

Conrad Bain, with actors Todd Bridges (left) and Gary Coleman (right) in 1978 when they were starring on Diff'rent Strokes.
NBC Television Getty Images

Originally published on Wed January 16, 2013 1:59 pm

He'll always be best known as "the kindly white adoptive father of two young African-American brothers in the TV sitcom Diff'rent Strokes," as The Associated Press writes.

Conrad Bain, 89, died Monday in Livermore, Calif., his daughter says.

Read more
The Two-Way
9:55 am
Wed January 16, 2013

Obama On Gun Violence: Americans Must Stand Up And Say 'Enough'

President Obama at the White House today, with Vice President Biden in the background.
Mandel Ngan AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed January 16, 2013 1:09 pm

At a White House event with children who wrote him letters after the Dec. 14 school shooting in Newtown, Conn., President Obama today said the nation cannot wait any longer to do what can be done to reduce gun violence.

Read more
The Two-Way
9:13 am
Wed January 16, 2013

Reports: French Troops Fighting In Mali, Foreign Hostages Grabbed In Algeria

CIA World Factbook

Originally published on Thu January 17, 2013 5:32 am

After five days of airstrikes aimed at Islamist rebels, French troops are engaged in their first ground battles with those forces in Mali, according to several news outlets.

Read more
The Two-Way
8:39 am
Wed January 16, 2013

Top Stories: Obama's Plan On Guns; Inflation Remains In Check

Good morning.

Sorry we're late with the roundup. We've had quite a few things to post about already today, as you can see:

-- Before Obama's Plan Is Out, NRA Calls Him An 'Elitist Hypocrite'

-- Inflation Rate Slowed Sharply In 2012; Prices Were Flat In December

Read more
The Two-Way
7:51 am
Wed January 16, 2013

Before Obama's Plan Is Out, NRA Calls Him An 'Elitist Hypocrite'

National Rifle Association

Originally published on Wed January 16, 2013 9:50 am

  • On 'Morning Edition': NPR's Ari Shapiro reports

Read more
The Two-Way
6:51 am
Wed January 16, 2013

Inflation Rate Slowed Sharply In 2012; Prices Were Flat In December

The cost of a gallon of gas kept rising last year, but not at the torrid pace of 2010 and 2011. That helped keep inflation in check.
Joe Raedle Getty Images

Originally published on Wed January 16, 2013 8:21 am

Consumer prices rose just 1.7 percent in 2012, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports. That's about half the pace of 2011 — when prices went up 3 percent.

In December, BLS says, prices were unchanged.

Read more
The Two-Way
6:24 am
Wed January 16, 2013

Interior Sec. Salazar Is Latest Member Of Cabinet To Announce Departure

Interior Secretary Ken Salazar.
Streeter Lecka Getty Images

Originally published on Wed January 16, 2013 7:58 am

Interior Secretary Ken Salazar intends to step down at the end of March, his office confirms to NPR's Jeff Brady.

Word of Salazar's plan broke over night. According to The Denver Post, the former senator from Colorado intends to "return to Colorado to spend time with his family."

As the Post writes:

Read more
The Two-Way
6:04 am
Wed January 16, 2013

Fireball, Panic As Helicopter Crashes In London

A firefighter walks toward some of the wreckage at the scene of today's helicopter crash in London.
Andy Rain EPA /LANDOV

Originally published on Wed January 16, 2013 8:00 am

At least two people were killed today in London when a helicopter struck a tall crane, exploded and came crashing to the ground in a ball of fire.

Reporting from London, NPR's Philip Reeves tells our Newscast Desk that "the wreckage landed close to a very busy commuter station at Vauxhall, and not far from a rail line running into Waterloo. ... Several cars caught fire."

Read more
The Two-Way
5:39 am
Wed January 16, 2013

Blast Rocks Kabul; Dozens Wounded, Attackers Killed

Debris littered the street at the scene of today's attack in Kabul.
Sean Carberry NPR

Originally published on Wed January 16, 2013 6:57 am

Men wearing bombs strapped to their bodies and traveling in two vehicles carrying more explosives wounded dozens of civilians in Kabul today when they attacked a government security office, NPR's Sean Carberry reports from the scene.

Sean tells the NPR Newscast desk that the Taliban is claiming responsibility and that:

Read more
The Two-Way
5:16 am
Wed January 16, 2013

Chaos Expected As NYC School Bus Drivers Strike; 152,000 Students Affected

All locked up: School buses sat idle this morning in the Jamaica section of New York City.
Justin Lane EPA /LANDOV

Originally published on Wed January 16, 2013 8:20 am

It's been a rough morning for many parents and their children in New York City, where about 8,000 school bus drivers and monitors have gone on strike — meaning about 152,000 students had to get to school some other way.

According to The New York Times:

Read more

Pages