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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1:11pm

Wed December 26, 2012
The Two-Way

'Fiscal Cliff' Deadline Looms, But Sense Of Urgency Seems To Be Lacking

Originally published on Wed December 26, 2012 1:49 pm

Will the lights be on late at the White House for the next few nights, or will talks about the "fiscal cliff" be less than dramatic?
Larry Downing Reuters /Landov

President Obama is "cutting short" a vacation that he'd already said he would cut short. "See you next week," he told reporters last week before leaving for Hawaii. The president is now due back at the White House on Thursday, which is pretty much what was expected. His family will stay in Hawaii until after the New Year.

Senators are also coming back to Washington, but many aren't likely to get to the Capitol until Thursday evening.

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11:33am

Wed December 26, 2012
The Two-Way

N.Y. Website Posts Map Of People With Gun Permits, Draws Criticism

Originally published on Wed December 26, 2012 1:49 pm

At its website, the image is interactive so that users can see who has handgun permits and where they live." href="/post/ny-website-posts-map-people-gun-permits-draws-criticism" class="noexit lightbox">
The Journal News' map of gun owners in Rockland County, N.Y. At its website, the image is interactive so that users can see who has handgun permits and where they live.
The Journal News

The website of New York's Journal News newspapers has posted an interactive map showing the names and addresses of people with licenses to own handguns in three counties just to the north of New York City — Westchester, Rockland and Putnam.

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10:14am

Wed December 26, 2012
The Two-Way

Gunman Who Killed Two Firefighters Left Chilling Note

William Spengler, in an undated image released by the Monroe County (N.Y.) Sheriff's Office.
Reuters /Landov

We're learning more about Monday's shooting deaths of two firefighters in Webster, N.Y., and the man who police say lured the first responders to the scene by setting fire to his home.

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8:48am

Wed December 26, 2012
The Two-Way

'Housing Recovery Is Gathering Strength,' New Report On Prices Signals

A "sold" sign outside a home under construction in Peoria, Ill., in October.
Daniel Acker Landov

Home prices were up 4.3 percent in October from the same month a year before in the 20 major U.S.

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7:59am

Wed December 26, 2012
The Two-Way

By Showing Ammo Magazine On NBC, Did David Gregory Break The Law?

Originally published on Wed December 26, 2012 1:50 pm

Meet the Press host David Gregory, holding what he said was a high capacity magazine, during Sunday's broadcast.
NBC News

Washington, D.C., city police are investigating whether NBC News' David Gregory broke the district's laws when he displayed what he said was a "magazine for ammunition that carries 30 bullets" on Sunday's edition of Meet the Press.

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6:59am

Wed December 26, 2012
The Two-Way

Top Stories: Frightful Weather; Fiscal Cliffhanger; Soft Shopping Season

Will someone come back to fill it up? On Christmas Day at the Lakeside Mall in New Orleans, this shopping cart sat all alone. After what's been said to have been a soft holiday shopping season, retailers are hoping that post-holiday sales will be strong.
David Grunfeld The Times-Picayune /Landov

Good morning.

Our early headline:

-- Weather Outside Is Frightful; Tornadoes, Snow, Rain Lash Much Of Nation.

Some of the other stories making news today:

-- " 'Fiscal Cliff' To Bring President Obama Back Early From Hawaii." (Los Angeles Times)

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6:27am

Wed December 26, 2012
The Two-Way

Weather Outside Is Frightful; Tornadoes, Snow, Rain Lash Much Of Nation

Originally published on Thu December 27, 2012 6:27 am

The wicked weather covers a lot of territory. (Image shows conditions as of late afternoon Wednesday, ET.
National Weather Service
  • From the NPR Newscast: Giles Snyder on the storm

(On Wednesday, we weaved new information into the top of this post and in updates below. Thursday, we began a new post about the weather.)

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1:03pm

Mon December 24, 2012
The Two-Way

One Comment Says A Lot: Here's Why We're Grateful

Mladen Antonov AFP/Getty Images

We want to say thank you.

Our colleague Kate Myers has been helping us look back on The Two-Way's year — the most popular posts, the most frequent commenters, the heaviest traffic days and other such measures. We'll share some of what she's found in coming days.

But something Kate just turned up strikes us as worth noting right away.

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11:50am

Mon December 24, 2012
The Two-Way

Christmas Day May Bring Tornadoes In Southeast

Originally published on Mon December 24, 2012 8:11 pm

Looking ahead to Tuesday and Wednesday: the darker the shading, the greater the risk of severe weather.
National Weather Service

Snow likely won't be the big weather story for much of the nation on Christmas Day, say the forecasters at the National Weather Service and The Weather Channel. But some potentially severe weather is in the forecast.

Tornadoes are possible along the Gulf Coast and in the Southeast. Here's what The Weather Channel says about Tuesday:

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9:55am

Mon December 24, 2012
The Two-Way

Firefighters Responding To Blaze Near Rochester, N.Y., Shot And Killed

Originally published on Mon December 24, 2012 1:38 pm

Two firefighters responding to the scene of a blaze near Rochester, N.Y., were killed today and another two were wounded when a gunman opened fire.

The apparent ambush in Webster, N.Y., was carried out by convicted murderer William Spengler, police believe. He was found dead at the scene, from an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound.

Spengler, 62, spent 17 years in prison for the 1980 murder of his grandmother.

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9:39am

Mon December 24, 2012
The Two-Way

VIDEO: NRA's LaPierre Says No To Ban On Large Capacity Magazines

The National Rifle Association's Wayne LaPierre.
Molly Riley UPI /Landov

One of the sharpest exchanges during his more than 20-minute long appearance Sunday on NBC's Meet the Press came when National Rifle Association CEO and Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre was asked why it wouldn't make sense to ban high capacity magazines for guns such as the one used to kill 20 school children and six adults at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn.

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8:03am

Mon December 24, 2012
The Two-Way

Forget About Chimneys: Think Wormholes If You Want To See Santa

Originally published on Mon December 24, 2012 1:40 pm

Science says Santa's been tricking us with that reindeer stuff.
Martti Kainulainen AFP/Getty Images
  • David Greene and Neil deGrasse Tyson on the "science of Santa'

Sorry, Google. Sorry, NORAD.

Your online "Santa trackers" are cool.

But that jolly old elf has you both fooled.

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7:17am

Mon December 24, 2012
The Two-Way

Top Stories: 'Fiscal Cliff' Looms; NRA Sparks Controversy; Gun Sales Surge

At the Get Some Guns & Ammo store in Murray, Utah, over the weekend, sales were strong and there were empty spots beginning to appear on the wall display of weapons.
George Frey Landov

Good morning.

Our headlines from over the weekend and early today included:

-- Ho-Ho-Hum Last Shopping Weekend As 'Fiscal Cliff' Loomed.

-- Syrian Airstrikes Hit Bakery: 'Piles Of Bodies'.

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6:35am

Mon December 24, 2012
The Two-Way

Romney Didn't Want To Run, Son Says

Originally published on Mon December 24, 2012 6:41 am

Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney on Election Night in Boston, as he conceded the race to President Obama.
Joe Raedle Getty Images

6:34am

Mon December 24, 2012
The Two-Way

Ho-Ho-Hum Last Shopping Weekend As 'Fiscal Cliff' Loomed

Originally published on Mon December 24, 2012 11:42 am

On this Christmas Eve there's this not-so-cheery news from The Associated Press:

"Christmas shoppers thronged malls and pounced on discounts but apparently spent less this year, their spirits dampened by concerns about the economy and the aftermath of shootings and storms."

The wire service says that:

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