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South Carolina Senate Votes to Remove Confederate Flag From Capitol

Is second of three required votes before sending the bill to the South Carolina House.
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The South Carolina State Senate took a step toward removing the Confederate flag from the Capitol grounds on Monday.

In a second reading of a bill proposed to remove the controversial banner, the Senate voted 37-3 in favor of taking it down.

The vote, however, doesn't mean the flag is going to be lowered right away: This is the second of three required votes needed in the Senate before the bill goes to the South Carolina House for a similar procedure. The Senate is adjourned until Tuesday.

Even with the support of Gov. Nikki Haley, the bill could stall, as there are indications the proposal could have a tougher road in the House. Some powerful Republicans have not said how they will vote, including Speaker Jay Lucas.

Haley said taking it down was one way to honor the nine black people who were shot to death by a racist white gunman last month at a church in Charleston.

In a statement Monday, she cheered the Senate's vote.

"The South Carolina Senate today rose to this historic occasion, with a large majority of members from both parties coming together in the spirit of unity and healing that is binding our state back together and moving us forward in the right direction," Haley said.

"I applaud the Senate’s decisive action, look forward to the Senate giving the bill third reading in the morning, and ask that the House act swiftly and follow the Senate's lead."