It’s Official: Mississippi House and Senate vote to change state flag

After a month’s long back and forth, the Missisisppi Senate followed the House in voting to adopt a news state flag on Saturday by a razor thin margin of 36-14

The House had earlier on Saturday voted for the change by a margin of 85-34.

Senator Barbara Blackmon spoke poignantly on the resolution when she siad “I would never have thought that I would see this flag come down in my lifetime.”

The wording of the resolution is as follows:

A CONCURRENT RESOLUTION SUSPENDING THE DEADLINES FOR THE
PURPOSE OF REQUESTING THE DRAFTING, AND THE INTRODUCTION,
CONSIDERATION AND PASSAGE, OF A BILL ENTITLED “AN ACT TO ESTABLISH A COMMISSION TO REDESIGN THE MISSISSIPPI STATE FLAG; TO PRESCRIBE THE MEMBERSHIP OF THE COMMISSION AND TO PROVIDE FOR ITS ORGANIZATION AND MEETINGS; TO PROVIDE THAT THE DESIGN FOR THE MISSISSIPPI STATE FLAG RECOMMENDED BY THE COMMISSION SHALL NO INCLUDE THE DESIGN OF THE CONFEDERATE BATTLE FLAG BUT SHALL INCLUDE THE WORDS “IN GOD WE TRUST”; TO PROVIDE THAT THE COMMISSION SHALL MAKE ITS RECOMMENDATION FOR A DESIGN FOR THE NEW MISSISSIPPI STATE FLAG BY SEPTEMBER 14, 2020; TO PROVIDE THAT THE DESIGN FOR THE NEW MISSISSIPPI STATE FLAG RECOMMENDED BY THE COMMISSION SHALL BE PLACED ON THE BALLOT IN A SPECIAL ELECTION TO BE HELD ON NOVEMBER 3, 2020; TO PROVIDE THAT IF A MAJORITY OF THE QUALIFIED ELECTORS VOTE FOR THE NEW DESIGN, THEN THE LEGISLATURE SHALL ENACT INTO LAW THE NEW DESIGN AS THE OFFICIAL MISSISSIPPI STATE FLAG; TO PROVIDE THAT IF A MAJORITY OF THE QUALIFIED ELECTORS VOTE AGAINST THE NEW DESIGN, THEN THE COMMISSION TO REDESIGN THE MISSISSIPPI STATE FLAG SHALL RECONVENE TO RECOMMEND A NEW DESIGN FOR THE MISSISSIPPI STATE FLAG TO BE PRESENTED TO THE LEGISLATURE DURING THE 2021 REGULAR SESSION; TO REQUIRE THAT THE SPECIAL ELECTION BE ADMINISTERED BY MEANS OF BALLOTS CONTAINING A COLOR PICTURE OR DRAWING OF THE DESIGN FOR THE MISSISSIPPI STATE FLAG; TO REQUIRE THE SECRETARY OF STATE TO PROVIDE THOSE BALLOTS TO THE ELECTION COMMISSIONERS OF EACH COUNTY; TO AMEND SECTIONS 23-15-351 AND 23-15-355, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO CONFORM TO THE PRECEDINGPROVISIONS; TO REPEAL SECTION 3-3-16, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972,WHICH PROVIDES THE DESIGN FOR THE OFFICIAL FLAG OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.

The Governor is expected to sign it, based on his Saturday statement on the matter that reads as follows:

The legislature has been deadlocked for days as it considers a new state flag. The argument over the 1894 flag has become as divisive as the flag itself and it’s time to end it. If they send me a bill this weekend, I will sign it.

We should not be under any illusion that a vote in the Capitol is the end of what must be done—the job before us is to bring the state together and I intend to work night and day to do it.

It will be harder than recovering from tornadoes, harder than historic floods, harder than agency corruption, or prison riots or the coming hurricane season—even harder than battling the Coronavirus.

For economic prosperity and for a better future for my kids and yours, we must find a way to come together. To heal our wounds, to forgive, to resolve that the page has been turned, to trust each other. With God’s help, we can.

No matter where you are…
I love you, Mississipp

Jon Ross Myers

Jon Ross Myers is the executive editor and publisher of the Mississippi News Network, Mississippi's largest digital only media company. He can be reached at editor@tippahnews.com

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