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
5:20 am
Tue April 23, 2013

Poll: Public Expects Attacks, But Boston Doesn't Add To Fear

In Boston and other places across the nation, people gathered Monday for a moment of silence to honor the victims of the marathon bombing.
Mario Tama Getty Images

Originally published on Tue April 23, 2013 6:38 am

The Boston Marathon bombings "riveted most Americans" and seemed to "confirm the public's long-held belief that occasional terrorist acts are to be expected," the Pew Research Center says.

In a report released Tuesday morning, it adds that:

Read more
The Two-Way
3:28 am
Tue April 23, 2013

Early Thinking: Boston Suspects Were Working On Their Own

Dzhokhar (at left) and Tamerlan Tsarnaev allegedly killed an MIT police officer, carjacked a vehicle and engaged in a gun battle with police soon after authorities distributed this image of the brothers walking near the finish line of the Boston Marathon just before two bombs exploded. Tamerlan, 26, died from injuries he received. Dzhokhar, 19, was captured Friday night.
FBI.gov

Originally published on Tue April 23, 2013 3:49 pm

(Most recent update: 8:39 p.m. ET.)

Read more
The Two-Way
6:09 am
Mon April 22, 2013

Rescuers Struggling To Reach Areas Of China Hit By Quake

As rocks and dirt tumble down a mountainside (at left), a police officer urges people to stay back on a road in Baoxing county, Sichuan province, on Monday. Rescuers are having a hard time getting to victims of Saturday's strong earthquake because of aftershocks and landslides.
CHINA DAILY Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Mon April 22, 2013 8:47 am

Reaching the victims of Saturday's strong earthquake in China's Sichuan province remains difficult because of aftershocks and landslides.

According to Voice of America:

Read more
The Two-Way
5:19 am
Mon April 22, 2013

Sales Of Existing Homes Slip As Inventories Tighten

A sale-pending sign is posted in front of a home last month in San Anselmo, Calif.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Originally published on Mon April 22, 2013 8:42 am

There was a 0.6 percent dip in sales of existing homes in March from February, the National Association of Realtors reports, because the supply of homes for sale has tightened as the number of would-be buyers rises.

Its data suggest that sales ran at a 4.92 million annual rate last month, falling from a "downwardly revised" pace of 4.95 million the month before.

Read more
The Two-Way
4:38 am
Mon April 22, 2013

Reese Witherspoon Apologizes For Her Behavior

Actress Reese Witherspoon in a photo provided by the City of Atlanta Department of Corrections after her arrest early Friday on a disorderly conduct charge.
AP

Originally published on Mon April 22, 2013 8:34 am

Now, something completely unrelated to the heavy news of recent days:

"I clearly had one drink too many and I am deeply embarrassed about the things I said," actress Reese Witherspoon says in a statement sent to Entertainment Weekly and other news outlets about her arrest Friday in Atlanta.

Read more
The Two-Way
3:42 am
Mon April 22, 2013

Top Stories: Boston Bombings; Midwest Floods; Texas Explosion

Originally published on Mon April 22, 2013 7:52 am

Good morning.

Our early headlines:

-- Boston Bombings: Monday's Developments; (our running coverage).

-- Midwest's Floods Aren't Over, But So Far, So Good.

Read more
The Two-Way
3:01 am
Mon April 22, 2013

Midwest's Floods Aren't Over, But So Far, So Good

As the Mississippi River has risen in St. Louis, the city's Lewis and Clark statue has — as often happens in the spring — been partially submerged.
Bill Greenblatt UPI /Landov

Originally published on Mon April 22, 2013 7:51 am

The good news is that "the big river didn't get too big," The St. Louis Post-Dispatch writes this morning.

"Sandbags held back the cresting Mississippi River from several towns north of St. Louis on Sunday," it adds, "while the forecast for the immediate vicinity remained high but manageable."

Read more
The Two-Way
2:17 am
Mon April 22, 2013

Tsarnaev Charged: Suspected Boston Bomber Accused Of Using WMD

A sign reading "Flying With Angels Krystle Campbell," is seen Monday as a passing MBTA bus with "Boston Strong" displayed on its message board drives through Medford, Mass. A funeral service for Campbell, one of the three people killed in the marathon bombings, was held later in the day.
C.J. Gunther EPA /LANDOV

Originally published on Tue April 23, 2013 3:07 pm

(Most recent update: 7:00 p.m. ET.)

The surviving suspect in the Boston Marathon bombings was charged Monday with using a weapon of mass destruction to kill three people and wound more than 200 in what FBI investigators said evidence shows was a coldly calculated attack.

Read more
The Two-Way
5:46 am
Sat April 20, 2013

A Thank You To Al Neuharth, Founder Of 'USA Today'

Al Neuharth, founder of USA Today and former CEO of Gannett Co.
Roger L. Wollenberg UPI/Reuters

Al Neuharth died Friday at his home in Cocoa Beach, Fla.

He was 89.

Al's name may not be familiar to you, but this blogger hopes that you are acquainted with the newspaper he willed to life in 1982: USA Today.

From 1984 to 2009, I was either a reporter or editor — and sometimes both — at McPaper (a nickname that critics bestowed upon USA Today, but which those of us who were there in its best days adopted with the pride of underdogs).

Read more
The Two-Way
3:18 am
Sat April 20, 2013

Strong Quake In China Kills Dozens, Injures Thousands

A rescuer carries a child to safety after she was pulled out of her collapsed home after an earthquake hit Ya'an City in southwest China's Sichuan province on Saturday.
AFP/Getty Images

"A powerful earthquake jolted China's Sichuan province Saturday near where a devastating quake struck five years ago," The Associated Press writes. According to CNN, early estimates put the death toll around 100. More than 1,000 other people were reportedly injured. Both figures could change substantially as more information comes in.

Read more
The Two-Way
2:08 am
Sat April 20, 2013

The Search For Answers In Boston: Why? How? Anyone Else?

A memorial honors the victims of Monday's bombings near the Boston Marathon finish line on Saturday.
Michael Reynolds EPA /Landov

Originally published on Sun April 21, 2013 4:47 am

(Most recent update: 5:10 p.m. ET)

With the capture Friday night of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, the 19-year-old surviving suspect in the bombings at the Boston Marathon, the story moves into a new phase — one of trying to answer critical questions.

-- Why?

-- How?

-- Was anyone else involved?

Read more
The Two-Way
10:53 pm
Thu April 18, 2013

'The Hunt Is Over:' Police Apprehend Marathon Bombing Suspect

Police officers guard the entrance to Franklin Street in Watertown, Mass., where Boston Police say they have captured the second suspect in the marathon bombings.
Matt Rourke AP

Originally published on Sat April 20, 2013 2:11 am

(We most recently updated this post at 11:10 p.m. ET on Friday. See this note about how we cover news such as this. For our running post about developments on Saturday, go here.)

Read more
The Two-Way
9:20 am
Thu April 18, 2013

Boston's Heroes Seriously Inspire Ray From 'Car Talk'

After the bombs went off Monday in Boston, bystanders, police and emergency personnel rushed to help those who were caught in the blasts, as this video image shows.
Marc Hagopian AFP/Getty Images
  • Car Talk's Ray Magliozzi on the Boston heroes

Jokes weren't on his mind Thursday morning when Car Talk funny guy Ray Magliozzi was a guest on WBUR's On Point with Tom Ashbrook.

Read more
The Two-Way
8:05 am
Thu April 18, 2013

Obama: 'A Bomb Can't Beat Us'

President Obama speaks Thursday during an interfaith service at Cathedral of the Holy Cross in Boston.
C.J. Gunther EPA /LANDOV

Originally published on Thu April 18, 2013 8:37 am

  • LISTEN: The interfaith service

"Small, stunted individuals who would destroy instead of build" do not understand that "a bomb can't beat us," President Obama said Thursday in Boston.

His emotional vow came during an interfaith service to remember the victims of Monday's marathon bombings. It was also a service that served as a celebration of the American spirit and the bravery of the first responders, volunteers and spectators who rushed to the aid of those who were caught in the explosions.

Read more
The Two-Way
3:55 am
Thu April 18, 2013

Jobless Claims Rose Slightly Last Week

The scene at a job fair in Manhattan last month.
Spencer Platt Getty Images

There were 352,000 first-time claims for unemployment insurance last week, up by 4,000 from the week before, the Employment and Training Administration reports.

The "4-week moving average" that gauges the trend rose by 2,750, to 361,250.

Read more
The Two-Way
3:38 am
Thu April 18, 2013

Ricin Suspect Described As Conspiracist & Elvis Impersonator

A screen image from a video on the YouTube channel where Paul Kevin Curtis has posted clips of his performances — in this case, as "Elvis."
YouTube.com

Originally published on Thu April 18, 2013 1:44 pm

Paul Kevin Curtis, the 45-year-old Mississippi man arrested Wednesday in connection with the possibly ricin-tainted envelopes sent to President Obama and Sen. Roger Wicker, R-Miss., is "better known to some as a celebrity impersonator," The Clarion-Ledger writes.

The Jackson, Miss., newspaper adds:

Read more
The Two-Way
2:40 am
Thu April 18, 2013

Boston Marathon Explosions: Thursday's Developments

The FBI released this photograph of a man they are calling a suspect in the Boston Marathon bombings.
FBI

Originally published on Fri April 19, 2013 4:11 am

Note: We're following Friday's breaking news — that one suspect is dead and that police are searching for the other — in a new post.

Thursday's post:

Read more
The Two-Way
1:46 am
Thu April 18, 2013

Texas Fertilizer Plant Blast Killed Several, Injured Dozens

A chemical trailer sits among the remains of a fertilizer plant.
Mike Stone Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Thu April 18, 2013 3:04 pm

After a fire and explosion at a fertilizer plant in West, Texas, that killed as many as 15 people and injured more than 160 others, rescue workers on Thursday are still sifting through the smoldering rubble hoping to find survivors.

Here's what we know at this hour:

Read more
The Two-Way
7:36 am
Wed April 17, 2013

Letter Sent To Obama Tests Positive For Ricin, FBI Says

A Hazardous Materials Response Team (HAZMAT) truck outside the Russell Senate Office Building in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday.
Jim Lo Scalzo EPA/Landov

Originally published on Wed April 17, 2013 4:04 pm

Update at 8:44 p.m. ET. Authorities Make An Arrest:

Authorities have made an arrest in connection to the suspicious envelopes sent to a senator and President Obama.

The FBI identified the suspect as Paul Kevin Curtis.

The The Clarion Ledger reports:

Read more
The Two-Way
5:11 am
Wed April 17, 2013

Texas Prosecutor Murder: Wife Of Jailed Ex-Justice Arrested

A wreath of flowers in honor of slain District Attorney Mike McClelland at the Kaufman County [Texas] Courthouse in early April.
Richard Rodriguez Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Wed April 17, 2013 8:44 am

"The wife of a former justice of the peace is being held on a capital murder charge in the killings of the Kaufman County District Attorney, his wife and a top prosecutor," The Dallas Morning News reports.

Read more
The Two-Way
4:29 am
Wed April 17, 2013

Pat Summerall Was The 'Voice Of Football,' Says John Madden

Pat Summerall in 1989, when he was broadcasting for CBS Sports.
CBS /Landov

Originally published on Wed April 17, 2013 9:49 am

  • From 'Morning Edition': NPR's Richard Gonzales reports on Pat Summerall

Pat Summerall was the "voice of football and always will be," longtime broadcasting partner John Madden said Tuesday.

Read more
The Two-Way
2:32 am
Wed April 17, 2013

For Thatcher, 'A Great Calm' After A Life Of Controversy

Former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher's funeral was held Wednesday at London's St. Paul's Cathedral.
Christopher Furlong EPA /LANDOV

Originally published on Wed April 17, 2013 9:52 am

Margaret Thatcher, the prime minister whose time leading Great Britain in the 1980s brought joy to conservatives and despair to liberals, was remembered Wednesday for "a life lived in the heat of political controversy."

With her death last week at the age of 87, "there is great calm" for the Iron Lady, added the bishop of London, the Right Reverend Richard Chartres, during a funeral service at London's St. Paul's Cathedral.

Read more
The Two-Way
1:55 am
Wed April 17, 2013

Boston Marathon Explosions: Wednesday's Developments

Flowers, flags and balloons at a memorial in Boston near the site of Monday's explosions.
Wang Lei Xinhua /Landov

Originally published on Thu April 18, 2013 2:50 am

(Note at 7:50 a.m. ET, April 18: We've begun a new post to track Thursday's developments.)

Investigators made progress Wednesday, as they tried to determine who planted two bombs near the finish line of the Boston Marathon, leaving three people dead and injuring about 180.

Read more
The Two-Way
5:45 am
Tue April 16, 2013

Shattered Family: Blast Killed Boy, Wounded Mom & Sister

This undated photo provided by Bill Richard, shows his son, Martin Richard, in Boston. Martin Richard, 8, was among the at least three people killed in the explosions, Monday, April 15, 2013, at the finish line of the Boston Marathon.
Uncredited AP/Bill Richard

Originally published on Tue April 16, 2013 9:16 am

There will be many heartbreaking stories in coming hours and days about the victims of Monday's bombings at the Boston Marathon.

Among the first such tragic tales is that of the Richard family from Dorchester, Mass.

As the local Dorchester Reporter writes:

Read more
The Two-Way
3:51 am
Tue April 16, 2013

Housing Starts Surged In March, Pace Is Fastest In 5 Years

A home under construction in Provo, Utah, earlier this year.
George Frey Landov

Originally published on Tue April 16, 2013 7:52 am

There was a 7 percent surge in housing starts last month, the Census Bureau and Department of Housing and Urban Development report.

As The Associated Press notes, the pace of construction — 1.04 million starts, at an annual rate — is the fastest in nearly five years and is another sign that the housing sector continues to recover from its 2007-08 crash.

Read more
The Two-Way
3:04 am
Tue April 16, 2013

Strong Earthquake Shakes Iran, Deaths Reported

Originally published on Tue April 16, 2013 7:39 am

There's been a strong earthquake, with an estimated magnitude of 7.8, in southeastern Iran near the border with Pakistan, the U.S. Geological Survey reports.

The temblor was centered about 53 miles east southeast of the small city of Khash. According to USGS, it was about 9.4 miles deep.

Read more
The Two-Way
1:51 am
Tue April 16, 2013

Boston Marathon Explosions: Latest Developments

A marathon runner, wrapped in a blanket to stay warm after the race, watched Monday as authorities investigated the bombings that shook the finish line area at the Boston Marathon. At least three people were killed and dozens were wounded.
Nicolaus Czarnecki Barcroft Media /Landov

Originally published on Wed April 17, 2013 1:59 am

The day after two bombs exploded near the finish line of the Boston Marathon, investigators began to unravel some of the details of what happened, and we began to learn about the lives of the three people who were killed.

FBI Special Agent in Charge Richard DesLauriers said that they believed the devices used in the attack may have been pressure-cooker bombs stuffed with BBs and nails. Investigators said the bombs may have been left inside nylon bags or backpacks.

Read more
The Two-Way
11:20 pm
Mon April 15, 2013

NPR.org Hacked; 'Syrian Electronic Army' Takes Credit

Originally published on Tue April 16, 2013 7:30 am

The Two-Way, NPR.org and some of NPR's Twitter accounts were hacked late Monday by an organization that's said to support Syrian President Bashar Assad's regime, as this statement from NPR reports:

Read more
The Two-Way
8:22 am
Mon April 15, 2013

Oh, Yeah! Kool-Aid Man Gets A Makeover And A Personality

The new Kool-Aid Man.
PR Newswire

Smashing through walls and yelling "Oh, Yeah!" apparently aren't cool enough for Kool-Aid Man anymore.

Read more

Pages