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
8:38 am
Fri September 7, 2012

In Case You Missed It: Video Of Gabrielle Giffords Leading The Pledge

Former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, D-Ariz., waves to the delegates at the Democratic National Convention.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

It was, as Eyder wrote Thursday night, "one of the convention's most emotional moments."

So here, in case you missed it, is a video clip of former Arizona Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords leading her fellow Democrats in the Pledge of Allegiance.

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The Two-Way
8:00 am
Fri September 7, 2012

VIDEO: Jennifer Granholm's High-Energy Address To The DNC

Former Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm making one of her points Thursday at the Democratic National Convention.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

President Obama and Vice President Biden are naturally getting the big headlines. But it's former Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm who is getting a lot of the buzz this morning for her high-energy address Thursday night at the 2012 Democratic National Convention.

Thanks to the video archive that C-SPAN helpfully makes available, we've created a clip of her 6 minute, 30-second appearance.

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The Two-Way
7:23 am
Fri September 7, 2012

Clinton Signs Report Designating Haqqani Network As Terrorist Group

A U.S. Predator drone flies through the night sky over Kandahar Air Field in Afghanistan. Such drones have been targeting groups such as the Haqqani network that are accused of attacking U.S. and Afghan forces.
Kirsty Wigglesworth AP

One of the most violent groups operating in Pakistan and Afghanistan — one which top U.S.

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The Two-Way
6:30 am
Fri September 7, 2012

Bail Granted For Christian Pakistani Girl Accused Of Blasphemy Against Islam

The young Pakistani girl who has been in custody for about two weeks after neighbors accused her of burning some Islamic religious materials has been granted bail by a judge in Islamabad.

But NPR's Jackie Northam reports that the bail set today — the equivalent of about $10,000 — is an "enormous sum here in Pakistan." So it's uncertain whether Rimsha Masih will be out of jail anytime soon.

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The Two-Way
5:12 am
Fri September 7, 2012

Top Stories: Jobs Report; Obama's Speech; Bail For Pakistani Christian Girl

Good morning.

Some of the early and overnight headlines on posts we've done here and at It's All Politics:

-- High Unemployment & Slow Job Growth: Likely News From Today's Report.

-- Obama: 'Times Have Changed ... So Have I'.

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The Two-Way
4:51 am
Fri September 7, 2012

Just 96,000 Jobs Added To Payrolls; Unemployment Rate Dips To 8.1 Percent

At a job fair in San Diego this week, Navy Sailor E-5 Cedric Washington spoke to Sim Garriotti from Lockheed Martin while interviewing for a potential position.
Sandy Huffaker Getty Images

Originally published on Fri September 7, 2012 7:34 am

The number of jobs on private and public payrolls grew by just 96,000 in August from July, the Bureau of Labor Statistics said this morning.

Meanwhile, the nation's unemployment rate edged down to 8.1 percent from 8.3 percent the month before. Often, the jobless rate dips even when employment growth is weak because the size of the labor force shrank as many Americans gave up looking for work.

It's a report that will surely add to the presidential campaign rhetoric.

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It's All Politics
4:32 am
Fri September 7, 2012

Fact Checkers Ding Obama And Biden For Some Spinning

Vice President Biden and President Obama wave to the delegates Thursday night at the conclusion of the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C.
Robyn Beck AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri September 7, 2012 6:52 am

"We heard some facts being spun" Thursday night when President Obama and Vice President Biden gave their acceptance speeches at the Democratic National Convention, report the watchdogs at FactCheck.org.

They and other independent fact checkers have compiled, just as they did at last week's Republican National Convention, a list of those things said by the two parties' standard bearers that don't quite add up or may give misleading impressions.

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The Two-Way
11:41 am
Thu September 6, 2012

From Mars: Curiosity's Tracks, Up Close And From Above

Curiosity's tracks on Mars, in an image taken from the rover.
NASA.gov

NASA continues to share some fascinating photos of the Mars rover Curiosity. Among the latest:

-- An image taken from NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter that shows Curiosity's tracks from high above. According to NASA, "the image's color has been enhanced to show the surface details better."

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The Two-Way
10:36 am
Thu September 6, 2012

Obama Was 'Spewing Coals' When Budget Deal Collapsed, Boehner Says

August 2011: President Obama (right) and House Speaker John Boehner at the White House as they and other lawmakers worked to head off a government shutdown that loomed.
Jewel Samad AFP/Getty Images

Some details are emerging from Washington Post journalist Bob Woodward's new book about the 2011 battle between President Obama and congressional Republicans over the budget, taxes and deficit reduction.

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The Two-Way
8:16 am
Thu September 6, 2012

Joe South, Of 'Games People Play' Fame, Dies

Joe South, in 2009.
Rick Diamond Getty Images
  • A clip of Joe South, singing 'Games People Play'
  • A clip from Deep Purple doing 'Hush'

Joe South, who wrote such '60s and '70s hits as Games People Play and (I Never Promised You A) Rose Garden, died Wednesday of an apparent heart attack at his home in Buford, Ga. He was 72.

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The Two-Way
6:57 am
Thu September 6, 2012

Putin Flies With Migrating Cranes, Opines About Group Sex; Seriously

Russian President Vladimir Putin, dressed to ... lead wild cranes as they migrate.
Alexey Druzhinin/pool AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu September 6, 2012 10:50 am

Keeping up with the things Russian President Vladimir Putin says and does that set him apart from other world leaders could be a full time job. Today alone there's word:

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The Two-Way
5:34 am
Thu September 6, 2012

Employers Added 201,000 Jobs Last Month, Report Signals

The scene at a job fair in Harlem earlier this summer.
Andrew Burton Getty Images

Three bits of good news about jobs were just released.

"Private-sector employment increased by 201,000 from July to August on a seasonally adjusted basis," according to the latest ADP National Employment Report.

And ADP revised up its estimate of the job growth in July — to 173,000 from the 163,000 it previously reported.

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The Two-Way
5:05 am
Thu September 6, 2012

European Central Bank Leaves Interest Rates Unchanged

Originally published on Thu September 6, 2012 6:20 am

"The European Central Bank refrained from cutting interest rates today as President Mario Draghi prepares to unveil a bond-purchase plan to save the euro," Bloomberg News writes. It adds that:

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The Two-Way
4:47 am
Thu September 6, 2012

NFL Owner Art Modell Dies; He Was 'Vilified' In Cleveland, A Hero In Baltimore

Art Modell, then the owner of the Baltimore Ravens, with the Vince Lombardi Trophy after his team beat the New York Giants in the January 2001 Super Bowl.
Jeff Haynes AFP/Getty Images

The news that Art Modell died earlier today in Baltimore at the age of 87 has produced very different ledes from newspapers in the two cities where the former NFL owner was a major presence.

The Baltimore Sun writes that:

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It's All Politics
4:23 am
Thu September 6, 2012

Clinton And Other Dems Did Some Cherry-Picking, Fact Checkers Say

Former President Bill Clinton at the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C., Wednesday night.
Mladen Antonov AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu September 6, 2012 9:28 am

  • Mara Liasson on 'Morning Edition'

Good morning.

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The Two-Way
11:31 am
Wed September 5, 2012

Asia's Richest Woman Slammed After Musing About Workers Paid $2 A Day

Australian mining magnate Gina Rinehart.
Tony Ashby AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed September 5, 2012 1:12 pm

Nothing ignites controversy like having one of the world's richest women tell her fellow Australians that they need to cut labor costs in order to compete with Africans who are "willing to work for less than $2 a day."

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The Two-Way
10:13 am
Wed September 5, 2012

The Toothbrush: It's In The Space Station's Toolbox. How About Yours?

The toothbrush/space tool.
NASA.gov

When we heard that astronauts aboard the International Space Station took a spare toothbrush along on a spacewalk today and used it to help clean debris from around some bolts they needed to secure in order to install a power unit, it got us thinking.

Just how versatile are old toothbrushs? We know we've used them to:

-- Clean bike gears.

-- Get grime out of our hubcaps.

-- Get at the crust around a car battery's terminals.

-- Polish jewelry.

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The Two-Way
8:13 am
Wed September 5, 2012

Earthquake Triggers Pacific Tsunami Warnings For Central & South America

The star marks the epicenter of today's earthquake in Costa Rica.
U.S. Geological Survey

Originally published on Wed September 5, 2012 11:48 am

The Pacific coasts of Costa Rica, Panama and Nicaragua are no longer the focus of tsunami warnings, the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center announced just after 1 p.m ET.

As we've been reporting, there was a strong — 7.6 magnitude — earthquake in Costa Rica this morning. At first, there were concerns about possible tsunamis from Mexico south to Chile. As the day continued, however, authorities gradually reduced their warnings.

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The Two-Way
7:50 am
Wed September 5, 2012

Hundreds Of Afghan Soldiers Arrested Or Discharged

A U.S. Marine (right) and an Afghan National Army soldier on patrol this summer in Afghanistan's Helmand Province.
Adek Berry AFP/Getty Images
  • Soraya Sarhaddi Nelson on the NPR Newscast

Looking to stem the recent wave of "green on blue" attacks in which men wearing police or military uniforms have killed more than 30 U.S. or other international forces, Afghan officials said today that they have "arrested or discharged hundreds of their country's soldiers," NPR's Soraya Sarhaddi Nelson reports from Kabul.

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The Two-Way
6:39 am
Wed September 5, 2012

Nearly 18 Million U.S. Households Had Trouble Getting Food Last Year

In Oswego, N.Y., this summer, a child waited at a food distribution site.
Spencer Platt Getty Images

An estimated 14.9 percent of U.S. households — 17.9 million in total — "had difficulty" at some point last year getting food because they just didn't have enough money or other resources, the U.S. Department of Agriculture reported this morning.

In 2010, 14.5 percent of households were similarly "food insecure" at some point, USDA says.

Even worse:

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