David Taintor

David Taintor is a news editor at Talking Points Memo. Previously, he worked at NBC News and Adweek. He's a native of Minnesota. Reach him at taintor@talkingpointsmemo.com.

Articles by David

A controversial anti-gay preacher questioned President Obama's Christianity Friday morning, when he delivered the morning prayer on the Minnesota House floor.

"I know this is a non-denominational prayer in this chamber and it's not about the Baptists and it's not about the Catholics alone or the Lutherans or the Wesleyans," Bradlee Dean said, sporting a track suit and long ponytail, "or the Presbyterians, the evangelicals or any other denomination, but rather the head of the denomination and his name is Jesus. As every President up until 2008 has acknowledged. And we pray it. In Jesus' name."

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The White House has released the text of President Obama's Middle East speech, as prepared for delivery. Here's the full text:

I want to thank Hillary Clinton, who has traveled so much these last six months that she is approaching a new landmark - one million frequent flyer miles. I count on Hillary every day, and I believe that she will go down as of the finest Secretaries of State in our nation's history.

The State Department is a fitting venue to mark a new chapter in American diplomacy. For six months, we have witnessed an extraordinary change take place in the Middle East and North Africa. Square by square; town by town; country by country; the people have risen up to demand their basic human rights. Two leaders have stepped aside. More may follow. And though these countries may be a great distance from our shores, we know that our own future is bound to this region by the forces of economics and security; history and faith.

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1||The Mississippi River crested at 57.1 feet in Vicksburg, Miss. Wednesday night, ahead of its original forecast, CNN reports, and high water levels are expected to hold for days. The river is 14 feet above flood stage in Vicksburg -- more than a foot above the record set in the great flood of 1927. Here are more pictures of Mississippi flooding.

Homes are nearly submerged in the Kingsway Green mobile home park in Memphis, Tenn.||newscom/Zuma Press&&

2||May 14, 2011: For the first time since 1973, the Army Corps of Engineers began opening the Morganza Spillway in Louisiana to lower water levels and to protect New Orleans and Baton Rouge.||newscom/Zuma Press&&

3||||newscom/Zuma Press&&

4||Memphis, Tenn.||newscom/DAN ANDERSON/EFE&&

5||Vicksburg, Miss.||newscom/Zuma Press&&

6||Vicksburg, Miss.||newscom/Eli Baylis UPI Newspictures&&

7||Chris Vaughn of Jonesboro, Ark. watches the sun set over the Mississippi from a half swamped bench at Jefferson Davis Park in Memphis, Tenn.||newscom/Zuma Press&&

8||Vicksburg, Miss.||newscom/Eli Baylis UPI Newspictures&&

9||The historic Yazoo Valley Railroad Station in downtown Vicksburg, Miss.||newscom/Zuma Press&&

10||Freight shipping continues on the Mississippi in New Orleans.||newscom/VARLEY/SIPA/VARLEY/SIPA&&

11||||newscom/Zuma Press&&

12||Vicksburg, Miss.||newscom/Zuma Press&&

13||Vicksburg, Miss.||newscom/Zuma Press&&

14||Vicksburg, Miss.||newscom/Zuma Press&&

15||Vicksburg, Miss.||newscom/Zuma Press&&

16||Vicksburg, Miss.||newscom/Zuma Press&&

17||Employees of Ergon Marine and Industrial Supply in Clarksdale, Miss. work to sandbag their property against the impending flood.||newscom/Zuma Press&&

18||||newscom/Zuma Press&&

19||Blake Hynum steers his boat past his cousin's inundated home in Vicksburg, Miss.||newscom/Eli Baylis UPI Newspictures&&

20||A water pump in City Front Park pumps leaking water from the flood wall back into the Yazoo Diversion Canal in downtown Vicksburg, Miss.||newscom/UPI Newspictures&&

21||Vicksburg, Miss.||newscom/ZUMA Press&&

As TPM has reported, a number of Confederate groups across the country have been pushing proposals for commemorative confederate license plates. John Adams, First Lt. Commander of Florida's Sons of Confederate Veterans chapter, wants his state to be next.

Adams told TPM the SCV has been pursuing a Confederate license plate since 2004, in hopes of selling them to raise money for the organization.

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1||The Great Mississippi Flood of 1927 caused more than $400 million in damage and killed almost 250 people. Floodwaters spilled over an estimated 27,000 square miles over seven states. More than 700,000 people lost their homes, and nearly half those people were forced to live in displacement camps. Herbert Hoover called it "the greatest peace-time calamity in the history of the country."

The train carrying vice-president Charles G. Dawes and Secretary of Commerce Herbert Hoover wrecked near Heads, Miss., on the Yazoo & Mississippi Valley railroad. The engine went into 40 feet of water, killing the engineer, during the flooding in the Mississippi Delta on July 29, 1927.||flickr/jwinfred&&

2||Torrential rain poured on the U.S. for eight months in 1927-1928, starting in the upper Midwest.||flickr/jwinfred&&

3||Train floats.||flickr/jwinfred&&

4||Lifeboats at Memphis headed for the Delta.||flickr/jwinfred&&

5||Opera House--Red Cross headquarters in Greenville, Miss.||flickr/jwinfred&&

6||Washington Avenue in Greenville, Miss.||flickr/jwinfred&&

7||Greenville, Miss. levee.||flickr/jwinfred&&

8||Goyer Service Station in Greenville, Miss.||flickr/jwinfred&&

9||Stoneville, Miss.||flickr/jwinfred&&

10||Plantation workers.||flickr/jwinfred&&

11||Greenville, Miss.||flickr/jwinfred&&

12||Greenville, Miss.||flickr/jwinfred&&

13||Main Street viewed from the Greenville, Miss. levee.||flickr/jwinfred&&

14||Washington Avenue in Greenville, Miss.||flickr/jwinfred&&


16||Rolling Fork, Miss.||flickr/jwinfred&&

17||Convicts doing labor in Greenville, Miss.||flickr/jwinfred&&

18||Near Helms, Miss.||flickr/jwinfred&&


20||Relief fleet and personnel of the Mississippi River Flood Relief Service.||.mil&&


22||From John M. Barry's Rising Tide: ". . . Out on the water there was unimaginable silence. As far as the eye could see was an expanse of brackish chocolate water. There was not the bark of a dog, the lowing of a cow, the neighing of a horse. Even the trees turned dingy, their trunks and leaves caked with dried mud. The silence was complete and suffocating."||.mil&&

23||Cary, Miss.||flickr/jwinfred&&


25||47 train and Red Cross.||flickr/jwinfred&&

26||Rescue boats.||flickr/jwinfred&&

27||Mississippi Delta.||flickr/jwinfred&&

28||Washington Avenue in Greenville, Miss.||flickr/jwinfred&&

29||Mules on Greenville, Miss. levee.||flickr/jwinfred&&

30||Holly Bluff, Miss.||flickr/jwinfred&&

31||The beginning of crevasse breaching levee at Mounds Landing, Miss.||.gov&&

32||Refugees in Greenville, Miss.||flickr/jwinfred&&