TAKING SIDES

Democrat Jim Webb Defends Flag

Jim Webb, a former U.S. Senator from Virginia, finally weighed in on the controversy surrounding the Confederate flag on Wednesday. In a post on his Facebook page, Webb, a Democrat, said that the flag "has wrongly been used for racist and other purposes in recent decades. It should not be used in any way as a political symbol that divides us." He also defended Confederate soldiers, writing, "We should also remember that honorable Americans fought on both sides in the Civil War, including slave holders in the Union Army from states such as Missouri, Kentucky, Maryland and Delaware, and that many non-slave holders fought for the South." He did not, however, take sides on the issue of the Confederate flag displayed at the South Carolina statehouse. Webb is expected to announce a 2016 presidential run by the end of June.