WASHINGTON – Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus Chair Rep. Judy Chu (D-Pasadena) voted July 9 to remove any state flag featuring the Confederate battle flag from the U.S. Capitol.

The vote occurred just hours after House Republicans proposed an amendment to their Interior Department Appropriations bill that would allow the Confederate flag to be displayed in national parks and cemeteries run by the National Park Service.

Rep. Judy Chu
Rep. Judy Chu

Chu released the following statement:

“It is embarrassing to see the U.S. House of Representatives take up proposals to defend a flag of rebellion and a trademark of hate. Since the rise of the civil rights movement, the battle flag of the Confederacy has been the symbol of choice for the Ku Klux Klan and other racist and violent groups. Most recently, it was celebrated by the shooter who took nine African American lives at the Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, which is why the state of South Carolina today took the historic step to remove this divisive symbol from their capitol.

“If the first state to secede from the Union can vote to remove this flag, than surely so can the House of Representatives. Unfortunately, some of my colleagues would rather fight to defend a flag that so many Americans see as a sad reminder of an oppressive and shameful past. For the sake of our country – the whole country – I hope that we can find a way to finally put this painful chapter behind us and work towards reconciliation.

“One hundred and fifty years ago, President Lincoln implored us ‘to finish the work’ and ‘to bind up the nation’s wounds.’ But those wounds will never heal so long as we revere this flag. It is time to take it down.”

The privileged resolution to remove the Confederate flag from the U.S. Capitol failed by a vote of 238-176.

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