It took 54 years and a tumultuous few weeks, but the Confederate flag over the South Carolina State Capitol in Columbia will finally be removed tomorrow at 10 a.m. ET.
After 13-plus hours of contentious debate, the State House of Representatives voted 94 to 20 to remove it, following the State Senate’s 37-3 affirmative vote on Monday. The validity of flying the flag once again became national news after last month’s massacre at Charleston’s Emanuel AME Church, which was perpetrated by a gunman who posted pictures online with the flag.Governor Nikki Haley signed the bill just before 4:30 p.m. ET this afternoon. She will give nine of the commemorative pens she used to the families of the nine Charleston victims. The flag will be relocated to the South Carolina Confederate Relic Room and Military Museum, which is near the Capitol.
“Twenty-two days ago, I didn’t know that I would ever be able to say this again. But today, I am very proud to say that it is a great day in South Carolina,” Haley said, before signing the bill.Watch video of the ceremony below. Haley comes to the podium at the 23-minute mark.