NEW YORK (AP) – Donald Trump says that anyone who burns an American flag should face unspecified “consequences,” such as jail or a loss of citizenship.
The president-elect’s tweet is a direct conflict with free speech rights guaranteed by the First Amendment to the Constitution. It comes as he struggles to name a secretary of state.
He tweets: “Nobody should be allowed to burn the American flag – if they do, there must be consequences – perhaps loss of citizenship or year in jail!” It was not clear what prompted the tweet Tuesday morning.
The Supreme Court ruled in 1969 that flag-burning is protected by the First Amendment.
Wisconsin congressman Sean Duffy suggested on CNN’s “New Day” Tuesday that Trump’s tweet was wrong. He said, “We want to protect those people who want to protest….I disagree with Mr. Trump on that.”
Duffy is the chairman of the House Financial Services Committee’s panel on oversight and investigations.