President-elect Donald Trump suggested people who burn the American flag should lose their citizenship Tuesday, saying in a tweet there “must be consequences” for such actions.
“Nobody should be allowed to burn the American flag – if they do, there must be consequences – perhaps loss of citizenship or year in jail!” he tweeted.
Some of the protesters who gathered in response to Trump’s election have burned American flags. The Supreme Court has recognized the act as protected speech under the First Amendment. (RELATED: Students Around America Stomp, Cut And Burn Flags To Protest Trump Election)
Trump transition team spokesman Jason Miller defended the tweet on CNN Tuesday. “Flag burning should be illegal, end of story,” he said. “I think most Americans would agree with me that flag burning should be illegal. It’s completely despicable.”
House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy also weighed in, saying people have a right to do it but shouldn’t be surprised if others don’t respond well.
“I don’t see why someone would want to burn it,” he said on MSNBC. “But we have a First Amendment right. But where I come from you honor the flag. If someone wanted to show their First Amendment right, I’d be afraid for their own safety, but [we’ll] protect our First Amendment.”
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