Confederate Flag Triggers Surprise Fight in House

Nancy Pelosi forces Republicans into vote to 'punt' on the issue
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 9, 2015 7:48 PM CDT
Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., speaks to reporters about the Confederate flag.   (AP Photo/Lauren Victoria Burke)

(Newser) – South Carolina may have gotten all the headlines today in regard to the Confederate flag, but the Hill points out there was plenty of high drama in the House as well. In its account, Nancy Pelosi surprised Republicans with a resolution to ban the flag from the Capitol—it uses the word "ambushes" in its headline—and the GOP responded with a procedural move to refer the resolution to committee, "effectively punting on the issue." Later, John Boehner's spokesman accused Pelosi of a "cheap political stunt," reports Politico. Had it passed, the measure would have forced the removal of the Mississippi state flag, which contains the Confederate flag, from Capitol grounds. And there's more: The Pelosi move came after Boehner pulled a different bill from the floor because of the flag dispute.

In that one, Southern Republicans vowed to kill a spending bill for the Interior Department because of an amendment added by voice vote on Tuesday that would have barred the Confederate flag from federal cemeteries. When Republicans tried to undo the amendment, Democrats objected, and Boehner canceled the vote. “I actually think it’s time for some adults here in the Congress to actually sit down and have a conversation about how to address this issue,” he said. “I do not want this to become some political football. It should not. And so I would expect that you’ll see some conversations in the coming days.” Boehner plans to form a bipartisan committee to review all matters related to how the flag is displayed, reports the Washington Post.

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