A measure to bar confederate flags from cemeteries run by the Department of Veterans Affairs was removed from legislation passed by the House early Thursday.
The flag ban was added to the VA funding bill in May by a vote of 265-159, with most Republicans voting against the ban. But Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) and Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) both supported the measure. Ryan was commended for allowing a vote on the controversial measure, but has since limited what amendments can be offered on the floor.
Story Continued BeloIn negotiations to reconcile the House funding measure with the Senate bill, the confederate flag provision was dropped. The bill passed the House 239-171.Of the eight House Republicans Ryan appointed to the conference committee that ultimately stripped the measure, four had voted against the ban on the floor.
A GOP aide declined to comment on the internal deliberations that led to the removal of the ban.
NOTE: Under current U.S. Federal Code, Confederate Veterans are equivalent to Union Veterans.
U.S. Code Title 38 – Veterans’ Benefits, Part II – General Benefits, Chapter 15 – Pension for Non-Service-Connected Disability or Death or for Service, Subchapter I – General, § 1501. Definitions: (3) The term “Civil War veteran” includes a person who served in the military or naval forces of the Confederate States of America during the Civil War, and the term “active military or naval service” includes active service in those forces.
Researched by: Tim Renick, Combined Arms Library Staff, Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. Member: Brigadier General William Steele SCV Camp 1857.
Edited By: Lt. Col. (Retired) Edwin L. Kennedy, Jr.