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‘Flag Burning Should Be Illegal!’: Trump’s Team Already Defending Unconstitutional Comments

Well that didn’t take long.

Within minutes of President-elect Donald Trump taking to Twitter to casually assert that people who burn the American flag should, in his words, face a “loss of citizenship or year in jail,” his team was already making the rounds defending the indefensible.

Jason Miller, the Communication Director for the Presidential Transition Team who previously served as a loyal surrogate to the GOP candidate, sat with CNN’s Chris Cuomo to discuss the newest cabinet appointments. But as happens when Trump shoots from the hip on Twitter, the conversation was derailed, forcing Cuomo (himself a lawyer) to press Miller directly about the boss’ bizarre statements.

Miller — just like at every turn on the campaign trail — doubled down and defending Trump’s wild assertions. “[Flag burning] is terrible and it’s despicable,” he told Cuomo. “It absolutely should be illegal,” he continued before trying to change the topic.

“When the President-elect says something, we gotta listen,” pressed Cuomo. “When [Trump] says that something should be illegal that’s a protected Constitutional right — I’m not saying I like it, but that’s a big part of the First Amendment in this country, a frustrating, maddening part of it — is that you gotta respect people’s ability to say what you don’t like.” The CNN New Day anchor continued, “It is a protected Constitutional right — can we agree on that?”

“No, we completely disagree,” said Miller remarkably.

The issue of flag burning was decided by the Supreme Court in the 1989 case Texas v. Johnson, which found in a 5-4 decision that any statute or law that criminalizes the desecration of a venerated object like the American Flag violates a person’s First Amendment privileges.

“It absolutely should be illegal,” Miller said with laughable commitment to the bit.

Watch above via CNN.

J.D. Durkin (@jiveDurkey) is an editorial producer and columnist at Mediaite.

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