Let Mississippi Vote held a press conference Monday at the Mississippi State Capitol announcing the filing of a ballot initiative on the state flag.
The initiative proposes placing 4 flags on the ballot – the 1894 flag that was recently removed, the bicentennial flag with the state seal, the choice presented by the Flag Commission, and the Stennis, or Hospitality, Flag.
The group will need to collect at least 106,000 signatures from registered voters.
Currently, the process now would place one flag on the ballot in November, that being the choice of the Flag Commission. The members of the Commissioner were appointed by the Governor, Lt. Governor and Speaker as part of the Legislature’s vote to remove the old state flag. That commission has narrowed down over 3,000 submissions to 9, and looks to whittle it down to 5 on Tuesday. Their choice has to be finalized by September 2.
Of note, the designer of the Stennis flag asked not to have her design considered by the commission. Representatives from Let Mississippi Vote said they have not discussed their proposal on having the design on the ballot through this initiative.
Let Mississippi Vote is a grassroots group of statewide volunteers led by Dan Carr and State Senator Chris McDaniel. The group is fighting to give voters the right to decide which flag should represent Mississippi.
“In 2001, the people decided this issue by referendum. But in June, the legislature ignored their wishes and refused to allow Mississippians another chance to vote,” stated Senator McDaniel in a release. “I believe the people of Mississippi deserve an opportunity to vote on this important issue. Whichever design the people select, I will be happy to support,” McDaniel concluded.
“No matter which flag you support as being named our official state flag if you believe the people, not the legislature, should have the right to make that decision we invite you to join us on Monday,” Carr said in the release.
You can watch their press conference below.