South Carolina

In hopes that it can persuade Congress to drop its prohibition on transferring detainees in Guantanamo to American soil, the White House is hunting for a highly secure place in the U.S. for some 50 detainees. Labeled as "enemy combatants," they've been held for more than a decade without trial in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, at a camp President Obama has promised to close.

Unlike the 52 other captives at Guantanamo whose release can occur as soon as a country is found to take them, these detainees are considered too dangerous to release at all. They're known as "unreleasables."

Sen. Bernie Sanders drew big crowds again this weekend, but they may not be the right kind of crowd if he hopes to win South Carolina's primary. The Independent senator from Vermont is seeking the Democratic presidential nomination, and he'll need black voters to win in the early-voting state.

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RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

During an emotional ceremony and amid popular cheers, the Confederate battle flag was brought down from a 30-foot flagpole that sits on the grounds of the Statehouse in Columbia, S.C.

The historic ceremony marked the end of an era and was conducted by South Carolina state troopers, who marched in formation in front of a cheering crowd of hundreds.

Slowly, the troopers cranked the flag down from the pole, folded it, rolled it up and marched out.

The crowd chanted, "USA! USA! USA!"

In a public signing ceremony staged in the lobby of the Statehouse where slain Rev. Clementa Pinckney once worked in the state Senate, South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley signed a bill to remove the Confederate battle flag from a flagpole on the Capitol grounds.

Thursday afternoon's event drew an extensive list of South Carolina's political establishment, including former Govs. Jim Hodges, David Beasley and Dick Riley — as well as the families of Pinckney and the eight other shooting victims who were attacked in a black church in Charleston last month.

The Confederate battle flag that has flown in a prominent spot at South Carolina's Statehouse for more than 50 years is close to being furled and put in a museum, after the state's House of Representatives backed a bill early this morning that would put the flag in a relic room.

After more than 12 hours of debate, the final vote was 94-20.

Gov. Nikki Haley, who is expected to sign the measure into law today, called it "a new day in South Carolina."

Updated at 2:15 a.m. ET Thursday: Final Vote

In a required third vote, South Carolina's state senators voted to remove the Confederate battle flag from its prominent place flying on the Statehouse grounds. The final tally was 36-3. The House will now take up the issue, perhaps as early as Wednesday.

In both the Senate and the House, a vote on removing the flag will require a two-thirds majority. The bill under consideration would move the flag to the Confederate Relic Room and Military Museum.

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KELLY MCEVERS, HOST:

South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley announced Monday a new push to remove the Confederate flag from the state capitol grounds.

Debate about the flag heated up after nine African-Americans were killed in a historic black church in Charleston, S.C., last week. Its removal would require action by state legislators.

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