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
8:51 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 12:52 pm

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.

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The Two-Way
8:35 am
Tue April 16, 2013

Strong Earthquake Shakes Iran, Deaths Reported

Originally published on Tue April 16, 2013 12:39 pm

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.

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The Two-Way
6:33 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 6:59 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.

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The Two-Way
4:28 am
Tue April 16, 2013

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

Originally published on Tue April 16, 2013 12:30 pm

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:

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The Two-Way
1:06 pm
Mon April 15, 2013

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

The new Kool-Aid Man.
PR Newswire

Originally published on Mon April 15, 2013 1:22 pm

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

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The Two-Way
12:28 pm
Mon April 15, 2013

Africans Win At Boston Marathon

The scene at the start of the elite women's division of the Boston Marathon on Monday.
Dominick Reuter Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Mon April 15, 2013 4:54 pm

Ethiopian runner Lelisa Desisa won the men's division at this year's Boston Marathon on Monday, finishing the 26.2 miles in 2 hours, 10 minutes and 22 seconds. It's the first win at Boston for the 23-year-old.

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The Two-Way
11:50 am
Mon April 15, 2013

March Was Cool, But Winter Was Warmer Than Average

In January, coats and gloves were optional as skaters enjoyed temperatures in the 40s and 50s at New York City's Bryant Park.
Mario Tama Getty Images

How wrong was Punxsutawney Phil when the groundhog said on Feb. 2 that we'd have an early spring?

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The Two-Way
10:53 am
Mon April 15, 2013

Will Gun Bill Pass Or Fail? Conflicting Signals Yet Again

Left to right: Senators Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) and Pat Toomey (R-Pa.) as they unveiled their plan on background checks of gun purchasers.
Molly Riley UPI /Landov

Here's a fresh headline that may be welcome to those who oppose the bipartisan plan to extend background checks of gun purchasers to sales made at gun shows and over the Internet:

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The Two-Way
9:43 am
Mon April 15, 2013

George W. Bush: 'I'm Comfortable With What I Did'

Former President George W. Bush, as he delivered a tribute at the funeral for pianist Van Cliburn last month in Fort Worth, Texas.
Joyce Marshall MCT /Landov

Since President George W. Bush left office in 2009, The Dallas Morning News writes, he has been "a punching bag for [President] Obama, Democrats and even some Republicans."

But while Bush told the Morning News during an interview for a long story posted over the weekend that "nobody likes to be criticized all the time," he also indicated that the criticism hasn't caused him to question his decisions:

"I'm comfortable with what I did," he said. "I'm comfortable with who I am."

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The Two-Way
9:00 am
Mon April 15, 2013

Top Stories: North Korea; Venezuela; And Gun Control

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