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House to vote on constitutional amendment against flag burning

[JURIST] The US House of Representatives [official website] is scheduled to vote Wednesday on HJ Res. 10 [text of resolution], a proposed constitutional amendment to criminalize the desecration of the American flag. If it passes in the House, it will go to the Senate for approval, then must be ratified by 38 states. Opponents [ACLU press release] of the measure believe it restricts First Amendment freedom of expression rights [First Amendment Center flag burning webpage] and argue that a constitutional amendment has not been used to restrict personal freedoms since Prohibition. Proponents [Citizens Flag Alliance website] argue there is public support for protecting the flag. Previous votes on flag burning have passed in the house, but failed to win support of two-thirds of the Senate. The US Supreme Court has ruled that flag burning is a form of protected speech [Supreme Court history on flag burning]. Lawmakers believe the measure may pass because of the conservative leanings of the current Senate. AP has more.

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