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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1:52pm

Tue August 28, 2012
It's All Politics

As It Happened: GOP Kicks Off Its Convention; Makes Its Case To The Nation

Originally published on Thu August 30, 2012 1:23 am

Texas delegates cheer as Romney is formally nominated as the Republican Party's presidential candidate.
Jae C. Hong AP
  • NPR Special Coverage, Hour 1
  • NPR Special Coverage, Hour 2
  • NPR Special Coverage, Hour 3

With a program designed both to tell the American people more about Mitt Romney and to make the case that Republicans' ideas for solving the nation's problems are better than Democrats', the 2012 GOP National Convention got going today and Romney officially became the party's presidential nominee.

Delegates also officially made Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin the party's vice presidential nominee.

We live blogged through the afternoon and evening. Scroll down and read "up" if you want to see how the story developed.

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11:53am

Tue August 28, 2012
It's All Politics

Gov. Haley: Democrats's Attitude On Minorities Is Offensive

Originally published on Tue August 28, 2012 2:35 pm

South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley (R) after her sit-down with USA Today and Gannett editors in Tampa this morning.
Mark Memmott NPR

Saying that "it's offensive to me as a woman and as a minority" that Democrats portray the GOP as "the party that hates you" when they reach out to non-whites, South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley made the case this morning that it's the Republican Party that minorities should be looking to join.

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8:36am

Tue August 28, 2012
It's All Politics

Ann Romney, Gov. Christie & The Roll Call: Today's Convention Highlights

Originally published on Tue August 28, 2012 10:09 am

The stage is set at the Republican National Convention in Tampa.
Spencer Platt Getty Images

Good morning from Tampa where the Isaac-delayed Republican National Convention is set to get going for real this afternoon.

It's going to be a busy day for the GOP once the delegates are called to order at 2 p.m. ET. Here are some highlights from the schedule:

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5:25pm

Mon August 27, 2012
It's All Politics

Herman Cain And His ABCs: He Sees Blacks Turning To The GOP

Herman Cain on Monday at the Tampa Convention Center.
Mark Memmott NPR

Why is one-time Republican presidential contender Herman Cain optimistic about the GOP bringing more African-Americans into its tent?

Because "a lot of people in this country have not realized or it does not get picked up in the polls [that] some black people can think for themselves," he said Monday afternoon. "They don't have to be told what to think and who to vote for and they are responding to the facts."

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2:21pm

Mon August 27, 2012
It's All Politics

Officially, The Convention Has Begun; And The GOP's 'Debt Clocks' Are Running

Originally published on Mon August 27, 2012 4:31 pm

Within minutes after being turned on Monday, the GOP's clock measuring how much the national debt had grown was moving up quickly.
Becky Lettenberger NPR

With a bang of his supersized gavel, Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus just opened the 2012 GOP convention.

And moments later with another bang of the gavel he declared it in recess.

As we've reported, tropical storm Isaac convinced Republicans to delay the real start of their convention until Tuesday.

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1:37pm

Mon August 27, 2012
It's All Politics

Though Small In Number, Protesters Take Aim At Both Parties

Originally published on Mon August 27, 2012 4:16 pm

Turnout for Monday's protest rally and march in downtown Tampa was much lower than expected and rain drenched the crowd.
Becky Lettenberger NPR

Organizers had predicted a turnout of thousands at a rally in a Tampa park Monday morning to protest Republican policies.

They ended up getting a better showing, as least early on, from the members of the media desperate to cover something — anything — on what was to have been the opening day of the Republican National Convention.

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11:58am

Mon August 27, 2012
It's All Politics

McConnell's Message: On The Budget, The 'Missing Person Was The President'

Originally published on Mon August 27, 2012 1:15 pm

Sen. Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., checked out the Republican Convention stage in Tampa on Sunday. The backdrop is in honor of Apollo 11 astronaut Neil Armstrong, the first man to walk on the moon, who died over the weekend.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

Political conventions, even ones that have been delayed a day by a tropical storm, are all about getting a party's message out to the nation.

Minutes ago in the Tampa Convention Center, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky used a sit-down with USA Today and Gannett correspondents to restate one key argument Republicans have been making and will continue to make through Election Day:

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7:53am

Mon August 27, 2012
It's All Politics

Trump: Romney Got A Laugh, But Birther 'Issue' Is No Joke

Donald Trump on Sunday in Sarasota, Fla., where local Republicans named him their Statesman of the Year.
Edward Linsmier Getty Images

The Donald isn't done yet with the "birther" conspiracy.

Developer/reality show star/sort-of politician Donald Trump brought his unique personality to Florida on Sunday and for at least a few minutes took some of the spotlight away from the Republican National Convention in Tampa and tropical storm Isaac out in the Gulf of Mexico.

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7:51pm

Sun August 26, 2012
It's All Politics

Was Romney's Song Playing Sunday? Check 'I Want You To Want Me'

G.E. Smith plays during a sound check inside the Tampa Bay Times Forum in Florida Sunday.
Mark Memmott NPR

Sometimes you just walk into a metaphor.

What classic rock title could better describe what a politician's really saying to voters than Cheap Trick's I Want You To Want Me?

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6:28pm

Sun August 26, 2012
It's All Politics

Republicans Are Ready (If Isaac Allows); And We're On The Scene In Tampa

The Republican message: Workers were putting up a sign Sunday inside the Tampa Bay Times Forum, where the 2012 Republican National Convention is set to begin.
Scott Olson Getty Images

Greetings from Tampa, where that old phrase "the calm before the storm" has never been more appropriate.

Tropical storm Isaac is now looking like it will make landfall somewhere along the Gulf Coast from Louisiana east to the Florida Panhandle. And when it gets there Tuesday or Wednesday, the National Hurricane Center is warning, Isaac could be a Category 2 hurricane.

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1:39pm

Fri August 24, 2012
The Two-Way

Now They're Even? Romney Gets In 'Birth Certificate' Quip

But seriously, folks: Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney joked about birth certificates today in Commerce, Mich.
Jewel Samad AFP/Getty Images

In Commerce, Mich., today, The Associated Press reports, Republican presidential contender Mitt Romney told supporters that he and his wife, Ann, had been born in nearby hospitals. Then, Romney added, "no one's ever asked to see my birth certificate; they know that this is the place where both of us were born and raised."

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10:22am

Fri August 24, 2012
The Two-Way

Two Dead After Shooting Near Empire State Building

Originally published on Fri August 24, 2012 11:53 am

One of the blocked off streets near the scene of today's shooting outside the Empire State Building.
Jim O'Grady WNYC

A shooting near the iconic Empire State Building this morning has left two people dead — one of them the gunman who first opened fire — and has shut down streets around that Manhattan landmark.

Police do not believe there's any link to terrorism. Instead, they suspect the gunman had some sort of work-related grievance.

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9:47am

Fri August 24, 2012
The Two-Way

Update: Isaac Might Be 'Near Hurricane Strength' When It Hits Haiti Today

Originally published on Fri August 24, 2012 3:21 pm

Isaac's projected track as of 2 p.m. ET on Friday (Aug. 24).
National Hurricane Center

Update at 3 p.m. ET. In its latest update, the National Hurricane Center says that tropical storm Isaac "could be near hurricane strength" when it reaches Haiti later today. That's a slightly more serious forecast from where we began the day.

Our original post — "Isaac Barrels Toward Haiti, But Isn't Likely To Become Hurricane Today":

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8:52am

Fri August 24, 2012
The Two-Way

21-Year Sentence For Norwegian Killer Of 77; But He May Serve For Life

Anders Behring Breivik in court today.
Odd Andersen AFP/Getty Images

At first the news may be a shock because of what would seem to Americans to be such a relatively light punishment considering the crime:

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8:29am

Fri August 24, 2012
The Two-Way

Lance Armstrong's Seven Tour De France Titles Are Effectively Gone

Originally published on Fri August 24, 2012 12:14 pm

Lance Armstrong, wearing the yellow jersey that identifies the leader in the Tour de France, during the race in 2003. He won that year and six other times.
Joel Saget AFP/Getty Images
  • Mike Pesca, reporting for the NPR Newcast

Cycling superstar and cancer survivor Lance Armstrong's seven Tour de France titles are about to be wiped from the record books.

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