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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7:00am

Wed March 14, 2012
The Two-Way

Santorum Wins In Dixie, Romney Takes Hawaii And American Samoa

Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum with supporters Tuesday night in Lafayette, La. Louisiana's primary is on March 24.
Sean Gardner Getty Images
  • Mara Liasson on 'Morning Edition'

After another set of presidential contests the story remains much the same — pundits say former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney remains the front runner in the race for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination, but former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum continues his strong challenge.

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2:30pm

Tue March 13, 2012
The Two-Way

With Economy 'Expanding Moderately,' Fed Leaves Interest Rates Unchanged

Originally published on Tue March 13, 2012 2:31 pm

Citing an economy that is "expanding moderately," an improving labor market and subdued inflation — but a housing sector that "remains depressed" — the Federal Reserve just announced it is holding to its current policy on short-term interest rates.

The central bank's policymakers also said they expect "moderate economic growth over coming quarters" and that the jobless rate will continue to "decline gradually."

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2:10pm

Tue March 13, 2012
The Two-Way

Why Praise For An Olive Garden Turned Marilyn Hagerty Into A Star

Her fame has taken Marilyn Hagerty to New York City to be on the TV networks. And her newspaper has created a blog just for following her travels.
Grand Forks Herald

The sudden national fame for 85-year-old North Dakota newspaper columnist Marilyn Hagerty because she wrote last week that the new Olive Garden restaurant in Grand Forks is "impressive ... welcoming ... [and] is the largest and most beautiful restaurant now operating" in the city reinforces two things for this blogger:

1. Almost everyone loves a story about someone who seems to be just so darn nice and who's still going strong at an age when many of us will just be glad to still be around.

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12:50pm

Tue March 13, 2012
The Two-Way

If You're Hiding It From Your Wife, That Payday Loan's 'Gotta Be Bad News'

Originally published on Tue March 13, 2012 12:53 pm

A payday store in Madison, Wis.,
Ryan J. Foley AP
  • Petula Dvorak talks with guest host Allison Keyes

Much has been reported in recent years about payday loans and the huge fees and sky-high interest charges that borrowers can rack up if they use such services.

And though their demise has been predicted, they live on.

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11:45am

Tue March 13, 2012

10:50am

Tue March 13, 2012
The Two-Way

Has Southern Hospitality Steered Pollsters The Wrong Way In Ala. & Miss.?

Originally published on Tue March 13, 2012 11:07 am

In Madison, Miss., earlier today, precinct worker Bob Shirley was handing out "I Voted" stickers.
Rogelio V. Solis AP

Our friend Liz Halloran reports that Mitt Romney "might just win in the South" today as Republicans go to the polls in Alabama and Mississippi to pick between the four remaining candidates for the GOP presidential nomination.

As she writes:

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9:34am

Tue March 13, 2012
The Two-Way

Report: Assad Regime Is Laying Landmines Along Syria's Borders

One of several landmines that were planted by the Syrian army on the border with Lebanon and later removed by anti-Assad activists.
AFP/Getty Images

President Bashar Assad's forces have placed landmines "near the borders with Lebanon and Turkey" along routes used by refugees trying to flee the fighting inside Syria, the watchdog group Human Rights Watch reported today.

Saying it has collected "reports and confirmations from witnesses and Syrian deminers," the organization called such actions "unconscionable."

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9:04am

Tue March 13, 2012
The Two-Way

Retail Sales Posted Solid Gain In February

There was a 1.1 percent increase in retail sales in February from January, the Census Bureau says. It was the largest rise in five months, Reuters reports.

And the gain didn't come just become rising gas prices led to a 3.3 percent increase in the value of gasoline sales. According to The Associated Press, retail sales rose 0.8 percent excluding gasoline.

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7:30am

Tue March 13, 2012
The Two-Way

Latest From Afghanistan: Some Gunfire, Small Protests, Reaction Muted So Far

Originally published on Tue March 13, 2012 3:25 pm

Afghan protesters shouted anti-U.S. slogans during a demonstration in Jalalabad earlier today.
Noorullah Shirzada AFP/Getty Images

There are fears that the killing of 16 Afghan civilians on Sunday, reportedly by a U.S. Army staff sergeant who gunned down the men, women and children in cold blood, will inflame the people of that nation.

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2:25pm

Fri March 9, 2012
The Two-Way

With 'Mouth To Snout' CPR, 'Mushing Mortician' Saves Iditarod Dog

Marshall, after his brush with death.
SB Nation

This story broke Wednesday in the Anchorage Daily News, but it has too much going for it not to pass along.

Monday night while competing in Alaska's Iditarod dog sled race, Scott Janssen's 9-year-old husky Marshall collapsed.

"Janssen raced to the dog," the newspaper writes. "Marshall did not appear to be breathing."

"I know what death looks like, and he was gone. Nobody home," Janssen told the Daily News.

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