Mississippi Lawmakers Vote To Remove Confederate Emblem From State Flag

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The Mississippi Legislature voted Sunday to redesign the state flag, whose rebel battle star was the final remaining symbol of the Confederacy on a state's flag. By the final vote in the Senate on Sunday, the news reverberated across the state.

House Bill 1796 passed in the Senate by a vote of 37-14, followed by extended applause and cheers.

'Today is a history-making day in the state of Mississippi, ' Simmons told colleagues.

"In the name of history, I stand for my two sons, who are 1 and 6 years old, who should be educated in schools and be able to frequent businesses and express their Black voices in public places that all fly a symbol of love, not hate", he said. Reeves said he would sign the new flag bill.

Republican Sen. Chris McDaniel, who also pushed for a statewide vote, said: "You have to let the people have their say sometimes if for no other reason than to diffuse their anger". Chris McDaniel said people were angry because they wanted a chance to weigh in. "What a attractive moment of unity". A new flag is not allowed to include a Confederate symbol and must include the words "In God We Trust". The Legislature must then vote to approve the new flag in January 2021.

The Mississippi House Rules Committee has recommended that a flag commission be established to present a flag option to voters in November.

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The bill now goes to Republican Gov. Tate Reeves's desk.

'They began to understand and feel the same thing that I've been feeling for 61 years of my life, ' Johnson said. That step was needed to introduce the bill on changing the flag that could be voted on immediately. If they get those votes, a veto would be pointless. "If they send me a bill this weekend, I will sign it", Reeves wrote on Facebook.

Winter said Sunday that removing the Confederate symbol from the banner is "long overdue".

The change also comes less than 10 days after Sankey called for the state's flag to be changed.

The only certain thing now is that the MS state flag "shall not include the battle flag of the Confederacy and shall include the words 'in God We Trust,'" as lawmakers solemnly read out Sunday. In the last referendum on the state flag in 2001, almost two-thirds of voters chose to keep it as is.

Years of campaigning has gathered pace in recent weeks as protests against racial injustice spread across the U.S. and beyond, with legislators urged to ditch the 126-year-old banner for one that better reflects the diversity of a state with a 38 per cent black population.

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