Congressmen Mike Thompson (CA-1) today secured a bipartisan agreement to require that every American flag purchased by the DOD to be 100 percent manufactured in the United States, from articles, materials, or supplies that are 100 percent of grown, produced or manufactured in the United States. Currently the DOD is not required to buy American made flags.
"Every American flag the DOD buys should be made in America, by American workers with American products," said Thompson. "At a time when our manufacturing sector is struggling and millions in our country are out of work, it is a slap in the face to all Americans to have their tax dollars spent on U.S. flags that are made overseas."
The commitment came during a discussion on the House floor during consideration of H.R. 5856, Department of Defense (DOD) Appropriations Act for Fiscal Year 2013, when Chairman C.W. Bill Young (R-FL) and Ranking Member Norm Dicks (D-WA) of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Defense agreed to address this issue and ensure that the Department of Defense only purchase American-made American flags in the final version of the defense funding bill.
The agreement is supported by Vietnam Veterans of America and the American Legion.
"The American Legion fully supports this agreement and we appreciate Mike Thompson's leadership in addressing this critical issue that is important to America's service members, veterans and their families," said Fang A. Wong, National Commander with the American Legion.
"Vietnam Veterans of America (VVA) strongly supports Congressman Thompson's efforts to work across the aisle to make sure that all American flags purchased by or through the Department of Defense (DOD) or any element of DOD must purchase only flags entirely made in the United States of materials made in the United States," said Rick Weidman, VVA Executive Director for Policy & Government Affairs.
There is already precedent for placing restrictions on the purchase of American-made American flags. Currently, the Department of Veterans Affairs is required to only purchase American made flags for serivcemembers' funerals.