The flag debate is the center of the state’s political focus because of the June 17 church shooting at Mother Emanuel AME Church in Charleston that left nine people dead, including the pastor of the church, Clementa Pinckney, who was also a state senator.
If the vote to remove the flag receives the majority in the house, the Confederate Flag, which has stood front and center at the statehouse will be removed after almost five decades.
South Carolina state Sen.
On Monday, he said his great-grandfather’s brother fled a plantation and joined the Union army when Gen. William Sherman came storming through Columbia.
Jackson said his great-grandfather, Ishmael Jackson, was a freed slave.
“The adults when I was growing up in the 60s said things about the civil rights movement that we could not repeat today”.
State Sen. Glenn Reese, D-Spartanburg, was among the 29 legislators who co-sponsored the bipartisan bill. “It’s far from over”, he said. Debate Monday began with two senators – one white, one black – whose families were in the state before the Civil War.
Flag supporters took to the floor as well. Sen. His bill was tabled with a 36-3 vote, as was a bill to have it flown only on Confederate memorial day and to replace the flag with the first national flag of the Confederate States of America, which was the Confederacy’s official flag from 1861 to 1863.
The bill – which is scheduled for a final Senate vote on Tuesday – needs a two-thirds majority vote to pass and move to the House for approval. A survey of lawmakers by The Associated Press, the South Carolina Press Association, and The Post and Courier, a newspaper in Charleston, found last month that there was most likely enough support in the legislature to approve the plan.
The flag will not come down Monday, even with the support of Gov. Nikki Haley.
The Senate proposal, which would remove the flag from a Confederate monument on the Statehouse lawn, would go to the House for consideration. Several powerful House Republicans, including Speaker Jay Lucas, have not yet said how they’ll vote.
“We did our job”, said South Carolina State Senator Vincent A. Sheheen.
Business leaders and Gov. Nikki Haley agree.
He is offering Confederate bumper stickers with the message: “Keep your hands off my flag”. People say well the state of South Carolina is doing all right.
Outside the statehouse, there were dozens of protesters.
For almost 40 years, it flew under the USA flag and the state’s flag atop the Capitol dome until a compromise moved it to a flagpole next to a soldiers’ monument. Other ideas included displaying authentic flags in glass cases as a history lesson or including the Confederate flag in a circle of flags of historical significance.