The 110th Congress considered three flag-desecration amendments in 2008, and
two are still legislatively alive as the 111th Congress begins its work in
House Joint Resolution 9, sponsored by Rep. Jo Ann Emerson, R-Mo., and
introduced on Jan. 5, 2007, would give Congress and the states the power to make
flag desecration illegal and establish criminal penalties. No further action was
taken on H.J. Res. 9 after it was introduced in the Subcommittee on the
Constitution, Civil Rights and Civil Liberties on Feb. 2, 2007.
However, Emerson introduced H.J. Res. 9, an identical bill, in the current
Congress on Jan. 7, 2009. It was referred to the House Judiciary Committee the
Senate Joint Resolution 40, sponsored by Sen. David Vitter, R-La., is
identical to H.J. Res. 9. After S.J. Res. 40 was introduced on June 12, 2008, it died in the Senate Judiciary Committee. Vitter introduced an identical bill as Senate Joint Resolution 2 in the 111th Congress on Jan. 6, 2009, and it was referred to the Judiciary Committee.
See "Recent flag legislative action" in this section for more information on related measures.