ELM SPRINGS, Tenn. — Sons of Confederate Veterans leader Christopher M. Sullivan issued the following statement in response to the CNN Republican debate Wednesday 28 November. “Mitt Romney proposes himself to be president of the United States but last night he clearly demonstrated not only his ignorance of American history but also his contempt for Southerners who love and respect their Confederate ancestors.

“Gov. Romney went way over the line when he attacked Southerners for respecting the historical significance of the Confederate flag. Perhaps the citizens of his state of Massachusetts still hate Southerners, but Gov. Romney should not expect us to accept his outrageous attack on Southern heritage.”

Responding to a question about the Confederate flag, Romney said,

“That flag frankly, is divisive and shouldn’t be shown. Right now with the kinds of issues we’ve got in this country, I’m not going to get involved with a flag like that.”

“That’s not a flag that I would recognize so that I would hold it up in my room.”

“The people of our country have decided not to fly that flag. I think that’s the right thing.”

Sullivan went on to say, “We were not aware that the people of the country have had their First Amendment rights abridged as Mr. Romney seems to desire. Whether Gov. Romney likes it or not, Confederate flags are freely flown throughout the U.S. and in other countries as well.”

“The Sons of Confederate Veterans, Inc. does not participate in partisan politics. We do speak out when anyone disparages the honorable service of Confederate soldiers and the symbols which identified them,” Sullivan concluded.

[tags]Sons of Confederate Veterans Inc, candidate Mitt Romney, Confederate ancestors, Southern heritage, CNN Republican debate[/tags]