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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7:27am

Thu February 7, 2013
The Two-Way

'Real Nightmare' Headed For New England; Blizzard On Track For Friday

Originally published on Thu February 7, 2013 4:29 pm

The National Weather Service's latest forecast of the snow totals across New England. Most places can expect 18-24 inches of new snow. It will start falling Friday and the storm is expected to last through Saturday.
Weather.gov

4:30 p.m. ET — Latest from the National Weather Service:

"A major winter storm is expected to impact the Northeast and New England Friday into Saturday. As much as one to two feet of snow is forecast from the New York City metro area to Maine, with localized heavier amounts possible. This, in addition to wind gusts as high as 60-75 mph will create significant impacts to transportation and power. Coastal flooding is also possible from Boston northward."

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3:21pm

Wed February 6, 2013
The Two-Way

Mothra? No, It's Just A Robot Exoskeleton Controlled By A Moth

Originally published on Wed February 6, 2013 9:24 pm

That's a moth controlling that robot. But don't worry.
Institute of Physics

What could go wrong?

"Researchers at the University of Tokyo have strapped a moth into a robotic exoskeleton, with the moth successfully controlling the robot to reach a specific location inside a wind tunnel," writes ExtremeTech.

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1:04pm

Wed February 6, 2013
The Two-Way

Oh, Mama! World's 'Oldest' Bird Has Another Chick

Originally published on Wed February 6, 2013 6:12 pm

Wisdom (left) and her mate on their nest last November at the Midway Atoll National Wildlife Refuge.
Pete Leary USFWS

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service biologist Pete Leary is proud to announce that Wisdom the Laysan albatross, who at age 62 (or so) is the "oldest known wild bird" in the world, has hatched another chick.

Wisdom's latest offspring "was observed pecking its way into the world" on Sunday at the Midway Atoll National Wildlife Refuge in the North Pacific Ocean, the agency says.

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12:07pm

Wed February 6, 2013
The Two-Way

REI Executive Tapped For Interior; Geithner Joins Council On Foreign Relations

Originally published on Wed February 6, 2013 2:29 pm

Sally Jewell, president and CEO of REI, who is in line to be the next secretary of interior.
Ron Sachs EPA /Landov

Update at 2:25 p.m. ET. It's Official:

Praising Sally Jewell as an executive who turned outdoors equipment retailer REI into one of the nation's most successful and environmentally conscious companies, President Obama just said he is nominating her to be his next interior secretary.

Noting that Jewell, who in a previous job worked as an engineer for Mobil, has also climbed mountains in Antarctica, the president joked about that being "just not something I think of doing."

Our original post:

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9:43am

Wed February 6, 2013
The Two-Way

Two Days After Rescue From Bunker, Ethan Turns 6

Originally published on Wed February 6, 2013 11:24 am

Birthday cards for Ethan have been arriving at the town hall in Napier Field, Ala., where he lives.
Joe Songer AL.COM /Landov

9:11am

Wed February 6, 2013
The Two-Way

The Iron Is Out, A Cat Is In As 'Monopoly' Changes Game Pieces

Originally published on Wed February 6, 2013 3:33 pm

The newest Monopoly token: Cat.
Courtesy of Hasbro

Scottie the dog is not going to like this news:

Monopoly fans have voted to add a cat to the classic game's cast of eight playing pieces. Getting the boot: Well, it wasn't the boot. It's the iron that got flattened.

The results of Hasbro's Facebook vote were revealed on NBC-TV's Today Show.

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8:07am

Wed February 6, 2013
The Two-Way

Reports: Postal Service Will Move To Halt Saturday Mail

Originally published on Wed February 6, 2013 3:57 pm

Letter carrier Raymond Hou delivering mail on his route in San Francisco (March 2010 file photo).
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

(We updated the top of this post at 10:37 a.m. ET.)

Calling it "absolutely necessary" if the U.S. Postal Service is going to stop losing billions of dollars a year and reach anything close to financial stability, Postmaster Gen. Patrick Donahoe confirmed Wednesday morning that USPS is moving to eliminate Saturday delivery of first-class mail.

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7:27am

Wed February 6, 2013
The Two-Way

Boy Scouts Delay Decision About Gays; Pentagon May Extend Some Benefits

Originally published on Wed February 6, 2013 10:48 am

A statue outside the National Scouting Museum in Irving, Texas.
Tom Pennington Getty Images
  • From 'Morning Edition': Kathy Lohr on the Boy Scouts' debate

(We updated the top of this post at 10:45 a.m. ET.)

The Boy Scouts of America now intends to vote in May about whether its troops should be allowed to accept gay members and leaders, a spokesman says.

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2:03pm

Tue February 5, 2013
The Two-Way

Economy To Slow This Year As The Government Tightens, CBO Says

While the economy will benefit from continued improvement in "underlying" conditions, the federal government's push to tighten its spending will slow overall growth in 2013, the Congressional Budget Office projects.

In an updated "Budget and Economic Outlook" reported released Tuesday afternoon, the agency forecasts:

-- 1.4 percent growth in gross domestic product this year, vs. 2.3 percent in 2012.

-- 2.6 percent growth in 2014.

-- 4.1 percent growth in 2015.

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12:58pm

Tue February 5, 2013
The Two-Way

Reg Presley, Who Sang 'Wild Thing' With The Troggs, Dies

Originally published on Tue February 5, 2013 2:07 pm

Reg Presley of The Troggs in 1967.
PA Photos /Landov
  • From the NPR Newscast: A little 'Wild Thing' and Neda Ulaby's report on Reg Presley

Grab a guitar, hit those three chords (A, D, E) and take three minutes to pay your respects:

Reg Presley, who sang Wild Thing with The Troggs in 1966, is dead. He was 71 and had suffered a series of strokes recently.

The band's website says Presley "died peacefully" on Monday, "surrounded by all of his family."

NPR's Neda Ulaby tells our Newscast Desk that:

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12:12pm

Tue February 5, 2013
The Two-Way

Where In The U.S. Should You Leave 3 Hours Early For A 30-Minute Drive?

Originally published on Tue February 5, 2013 1:16 pm

Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

This news got our attention, and not just because The Two-Way's home office is in the nation's capital:

Washington, D.C., and its surrounding suburbs are the worst place in the nation to be if you absolutely, positively have to get to an important appointment on time.

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11:02am

Tue February 5, 2013
The Two-Way

Obama Calls For Small Package Of Cuts, Tax Changes To Head Off 'Sequester'

Originally published on Wed February 6, 2013 7:02 am

President Obama at the White House on Tuesday.
Kevin Lamarque Reuters /Landov

(We updated the top of this post at 1:30 p.m. ET.)

Looking to head off deep, automatic spending cuts set to kick in on March 1, President Obama on Tuesday afternoon said that to avoid the negative economic effects that come with "political disfunction," Congress should move quickly to pass "a smaller package of spending cuts and tax reforms" that won't hurt the economy.

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9:48am

Tue February 5, 2013
The Two-Way

Dell Seals $24.2 Billion Buyout Deal; Founder Among Buyers

Originally published on Tue February 5, 2013 12:56 pm

Matt Rourke AP

"Slumping personal computer maker Dell is selling itself for $24.4 billion to its founder and a group of investors that includes Microsoft," The Associated Press writes, in "the largest deal of its kind since the Great Recession dried up financing for risky maneuvers like this."

The wire service adds that "the complex agreement announced Tuesday will end Dell Inc.'s nearly 25-year history as a publicly traded company. Shareholders are receiving $13.65 per share for their stock. ... Founder Michael Dell will remain the company's CEO and largest shareholder."

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8:35am

Tue February 5, 2013
The Two-Way

Broader Justification Emerges Of When U.S. Can Kill Americans Who Join Al-Qaida

Originally published on Tue February 5, 2013 12:57 pm

October 2011: Men stand on the rubble of a building destroyed by a U.S. drone strike in southeastern Yemen. Among those killed was U.S. citizen Abdulrahman al-Awlaki, the son of U.S.-born cleric Anwar al-Awlaki — who himself was killed by a drone strike the month before.
Khaled Abdullah Reuters /Landov
  • From 'Morning Edition': Carrie Johnson talks with Steve Inskeep

American citizens who become leaders in al-Qaida or other terrorist organizations overseas and pose "an imminent threat" to Americans may be killed with drone strikes even when there's no evidence that they have specific plans to attack Americans or U.S. interests, according to a Justice Department memo that surfaced Monday.

NPR's Carrie Johnson tells our Newscast Desk that:

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7:41am

Tue February 5, 2013
The Two-Way

Dramatic End To Alabama Hostage Standoff Took Careful Planning

Originally published on Tue February 5, 2013 9:29 pm

Law enforcement officials, including some from the FBI, near the scene of the hostage situation in Midland City, Ala., on Friday.
Philip Sears Reuters /Landov
  • From the NPR Newscast: Dan Carsen reports

(We updated the top of this post with new material at 9:50 a.m. ET.)

As more becomes known about how authorities on Monday rescued an almost-6-year-old boy named Ethan from his nearly week-long captivity in an Alabama bunker with a gunman, some fascinating details are emerging.

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