Speaker Lucas calls for ‘swift resolution’ on flag

I was so excited about the reports of what Nikki Haley might do today that initially I didn’t see this:

As the ever-growing chorus of South Carolina and United States citizens calling for the removal of the Confederate Flag from the State House grounds gets louder, one of the state’s top legislators has called for “swift resolution” on the issue.

House Speaker Jay Lucas in a statement released Monday morning said the 2000 compromise that removed the flag from atop the State House dome and raised it in front of the Confederate Memorial on Gervais Street was “ultimately solved by compromise.”

“Wednesday’s unspeakable tragedy has reignited a discussion on this sensitive issue that holds a long and complicated history in the Palmetto State,” Lucas said. “Moving South Carolina forward from this terrible tragedy requires a swift resolution of this issue.”

Legislators are boxed in currently due to parliamentary procedure, so introducing a bill to remove the flag is not currently possible unless a special session is called….

Whatever these state leaders do going forward on this, let’s not forget the courage of Republican Reps. Doug Brannon and Gary Clary, who stepped out on this first.

What Brannon said as to why he plans to file a bill to lower the flag bears repeating:

“I just didn’t have the balls for five years to do it,” Brannon said. “But when my friend was assassinated for being nothing more than a black man, I decided it was time for that thing to be off the State House grounds,”

15 thoughts on “Speaker Lucas calls for ‘swift resolution’ on flag

  1. Brad Warthen Post author

    If these reports are true, you have to wonder what’s going on with Lindsey Graham. Yeah, this is a State House issue and he has no role to play — beyond exercising political leadership as the state’s best-known serving Republican.

    If I were him, I wouldn’t want to be the guy still mouthing the old party line…

    1. Kathryn Fenner

      If Mitt Romney, leader of a church that formally viewed blacks as inferior until 1978, can call for removal, c’mon Lindsey–do the right thing!

    2. Mark Stewart

      Because Graham is not a leader. Sorry; it is just that simple.

      He has whiffed this twice in two days; nobody is going to seek him out for a third time at this point for what they could only presume would not be a noteworthy statement of principle from him.

      Maybe you can explain it to him?

    1. Kathryn Fenner

      and Pastides also (finally) called for its removal. I noted their vehicles behind the Pres. House this morning, unlike recent days. I believe they returned for this.

  2. Dave Crockett

    Now CNN is making it sound like the 4 p.m. presser is ALL Lindsay’s doing! Whaaaaaaaat?

  3. JesseS

    Taking the flag down isn’t enough. We need to repeal the laws surround the State House’s micromanagement of war monuments.

    While we are at it, we need to removed every statue, monument, and marker to a white persons (with the possible exception of Washington) from the State House grounds. That means Strom, Hampton, J. Marion Sims, Confederate Women, Confederate Soldiers, etc. Maybe even the Spanish-American monument. I know it is radical and nuts and sounds like a bunch of leftist nonsense, but I really don’t want my grandchildren to have to fight over this garbage for decades like mine did. Just clear it all out now and be done with it. They deserve better than fighting over our petty, childish non-sense.

    1. Kathryn Fenner

      Hey, let’s don’t let the great be the enemy of the good. Get the flag down. Then we can talk about all the other monuments, etc.

  4. Kathryn Fenner

    I tried to find the video of Candidate Haley being schooled by SCV (?) on the flag, but could not.

    1. Laura Hart

      The link to the videos in Brad’s 2010 post is no longer operative. I found the videos after much searching, but see no reason to link to them today. Everyone knows the Governor’s position as of yesterday is different than it was in the years before the killings in Charleston. I am just grateful that she has finally changed her mind on this.

  5. Brad Warthen Post author

    Here’s Lucas’ full statement:

    “In my time as Speaker, the South Carolina House has refused to shy away from important, tough issues. We instead have faced them head on with thorough study and debate.

    “Last week’s terrorizing act of violence shook the very core of every South Carolinian. We have shown that during times of adversity, our love and support for each other knows no bounds. The forgiveness offered by the nine innocent victims’ families is proof that evil will not prevail or divide us.

    “The intense and difficult debate that took place in 2000 over the confederate soldier flag was ultimately resolved by compromise. Wednesday’s unspeakable tragedy has reignited a discussion on this sensitive issue that holds a long and complicated history in the Palmetto State. Moving South Carolina forward from this terrible tragedy requires a swift resolution of this issue.”

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