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Jackson: Kill Flag Compromise

April 21, 2000

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) _ The Rev. Jesse Jackson has joined efforts to kill a bill that would remove the Confederate flag from atop the Statehouse dome but allow it to fly at a monument to Confederate soldiers.

Jackson and his Rainbow/PUSH Coalition on Thursday backed the NAACP’s opposition to the Senate-approved compromise legislation.

The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People forced the flag debate when it started a tourism and business boycott of the state. The organization has said that proposal won’t work because the flag shouldn’t fly on the Statehouse grounds or in any other position of sovereignty.

``That flag should be in the museum as a relic of the nation’s past,″ said Jackson, a Greenville native. ``The vanquished have no right to fly the flag. One could not fly a Nazi flag over the capitol in Germany or fly it on the grounds of the Statehouse.″

Jackson’s remarks came in a telephone interview after a state representative of his Rainbow/PUSH Coalition spoke in Columbia with other flag opponents.

His support for the NAACP’s position came as House leaders prepared for debate on the Senate compromise plan that passed a Judiciary subcommittee Wednesday. With 123 House members, the bill would need 62 votes to pass. The House Judiciary Committee is expected to approve the bill on Tuesday, and it could reach the floor of the Republican-controlled House in the next two weeks.

Passing the Senate bill ``is not a done deal,″ said House Speaker David Wilkins. ``I think it’s going to be fairly close.″

Gov. Jim Hodges has said he would support any bill that removes the Confederate flag from the Statehouse dome.

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