Former United Nations ambassador Nikki Haley Photo: John Lamparski/Getty Images

Former United Nations ambassador Nikki Haley said that shooter Dylann Roof hijacked the meaning of the Confederate flag when, in 2017, he attacked a historically black church in Charleston, S.C., in an interview with The Blaze.

What she's saying: "People saw [the Confederate flag] as service, and sacrifice and heritage," Haley said, adding, "the national media came in droves — they wanted to define what happened. They wanted to make this about racism. They wanted to make it about gun control. They wanted to make it about the death penalty."

Context: Haley was the governor of South Carolina at the time of the shooting. She characterized South Carolinians' view of the flag in similar terms at the time, as she called for the removal of the Confederate flag from the Capitol grounds, The New York Times reported.

  • Roof, a self-described white supremacist, was found guilty and sentenced to death in 2017 for killing nine people, the New York Times reports.
  • In a tweet on Friday, Haley recalled the shooting as "a painful time for our state."

Go deeper: The deadliest mass shootings in modern U.S. history

Editor's note: The post has been updated to include additional context.

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Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 4 p.m. ET: 12,813,864 — Total deaths: 566,790 — Total recoveries — 7,046,535Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 4 p.m. ET: 3,286,025 — Total deaths: 135,089 — Total recoveries: 995,576 — Total tested: 39,553,395Map.
  3. States: Florida smashes single-day record for new coronavirus cases with over 15,000 — Miami-Dade mayor says "it won't be long" until county's hospitals reach capacity.
  4. Public health: Ex-FDA chief projects "apex" of South's coronavirus curve in 2-3 weeks — Coronavirus testing czar: Lockdowns in hotspots "should be on the table"
  5. Education: Betsy DeVos says schools that don't reopen shouldn't get federal funds — Pelosi accuses Trump of "messing with the health of our children."

11 GOP congressional nominees support QAnon conspiracy

Lauren Boebert posing in her restaurant in Rifle, Colorado, on April 24. Photo: Emily Kask/AFP

At least 11 Republican congressional nominees have publicly supported or defended the QAnon conspiracy theory movement or some of its tenets — and more aligned with the movement may still find a way onto ballots this year.

Why it matters: Their progress shows how a fringe online forum built on unsubstantiated claims and flagged as a threat by the FBI is seeking a foothold in the U.S. political mainstream.

Lindsey Graham says he will ask Mueller to testify before Senate

Photo: Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images

Senate Judiciary Chairman Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) tweeted Sunday that he will grant Democrats' request to call former special counsel Robert Mueller to testify before his committee.

The big picture: The announcement comes on the heels of Mueller publishing an op-ed in the Washington Post that defended the Russia investigation and conviction of Roger Stone, whose sentence was commuted by President Trump on Friday.