By a vote of 85-34, the newly passed resolution suspends the chamber’s rules so that lawmakers can consider a bill that would change or remove the flag. As the resolution passed, loud cheers could be heard throughout the chamber.
Saturday’s vote is the first step toward removal of the state’s flag. The measure now moves to a Senate committee before going to the chamber.
Mississippi is the last state in the country whose flag features the Confederate emblem. The state flag features red, white and blue stripes with the Confederate battle emblem in the corner. It was first adopted in 1894.
“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,” Reeves said.
“We should not be under any illusion that a vote in the Capitol is the end of what must be done — the job before is us to bring the state together and I intend to work night and day to do it,” Reeves said.
“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,” he added.