Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe (D) called for the removal of the Confederate flag from state-sponsored license plates on Tuesday during an appearance in Richmond, Virginia, days after the Supreme Court ruled the state of Texas could block the Confederate flag from vanity plates.
McAuliffe made the announcement a day after South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley (R) called for the removal of the Confederate flag from her own state's capitol grounds, a response to backlash over the flag following a mass shooting at a historic black church in Charleston, South Carolina.
“As Governor Haley said yesterday, her state can ill afford to let this symbol continue to divide the people of South Carolina. I believe the same is true here in Virginia. Although the battle flag is not flown here on Capitol Square, it has been the subject of considerable controversy, and it divides many of our people," McAuliffe said, according to CBS 6 TV. “Even its display on state issued license tags is, in my view, unnecessarily divisive and hurtful to too many of our people."
McAuliffe said he has requested the state's attorney general and transportation secretary take the necessary steps to reverse a prior court ruling requiring the state to offer license plates adorned with the Confederate flag, and to lay out a plan to replace existing license plates, according to the Washington Post.
Virginia is one of at least nine other states offering specialty license plates featuring the Confederate flag, according to the Washington Post.