The South Carolina Senate voted Monday to remove the Confederate flag from the Statehouse in Columbia.
The bill to remove the flag cruised through the Senate in a winning 37-3 vote. South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley (R) says she wants the flag gone and will sign the bill, provided it passes the House before arriving at her desk.
“We now have the opportunity, the obligation to put the exclamation point on an extraordinary narrative of good and evil, of love and mercy that will take its place in the history books,” said Republican Sen. Tom Davis.
The vote occurred days after the 15th anniversary of when the Confederate flag was removed from the South Carolina Capitol dome, and relocated near a Confederate monument on the Statehouse grounds. Debate over the flag reignited after Dylann Roof shot and killed nine people at the Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, South Carolina. Roof is a white supremacist and celebrated segregation and the Confederate flag.
There are some lawmakers who still contend that the Confederate flag isn’t a symbol of racism and that racist groups appropriated it, a common argument among the flag’s supporters.
The proposal is expected to have a tougher time passing the House. Some Republicans have kept their opinions on the matter silent. Gov. Haley, a Republican, and Democratic lawmakers have found common ground in believing that the flag should be removed. They’re correct.