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
9:50 am
Tue March 13, 2012

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

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

Originally published on Tue March 13, 2012 10:07 am

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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The Two-Way
8:34 am
Tue March 13, 2012

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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The Two-Way
8:04 am
Tue March 13, 2012

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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The Two-Way
6:30 am
Tue March 13, 2012

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

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

Originally published on Tue March 13, 2012 2:25 pm

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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The Two-Way
1:25 pm
Fri March 9, 2012

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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The Two-Way
11:00 am
Fri March 9, 2012

Photo: Northern Lights Over Iceland

The Northern Lights in the sky Thursday above Faskusfjordur on the east coast of Iceland Thursday.
Jonina Oskardottir AP

Originally published on Fri March 9, 2012 12:28 pm

The solar storm that swept over Earth Thursday didn't seem to cause any major problems, as some had feared.

But the prediction that it would create some beautiful Northern Lights has proved to be quite true. The Associated Press has moved a quite striking photo taken Thursday on the east coast of Iceland.

If you see others, and good videos as well, share any links in the comments thread.

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The Two-Way
10:00 am
Fri March 9, 2012

VIDEO: Check Out This 7-Year-Old's Monster Trap

Audri, up close.
YouTube.com

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The Two-Way
8:30 am
Fri March 9, 2012

'Horrified' by Destruction She Saw, U.N. Humanitarian Chief Presses Syria

Feb. 11, 2012: some of the damage in the Baba Amr district of Homs, Syria.
AFP/Getty Images

There are stark words this morning from the U.N.'s top humanitarian affairs official about what she saw this week during a two-day visit to Syria. In a statement sent to reporters, Valerie Amos says, in part:

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The Two-Way
7:32 am
Fri March 9, 2012

Unemployment Rate Stayed At 8.3 Percent In February

Originally published on Fri March 9, 2012 8:53 am

There were 227,000 net jobs added to private and public payrolls last month and the nation's unemployment rate remained unchanged, at 8.3 percent, the Bureau of Labor Statistics just reported.

We'll have more from the report shortly. And watch for the Planet Money blog to add its take later.

Update at 9:50 a.m. ET. White House Comment:

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