Nancy Pelosi and other Democratic lawmakers are ramping up calls to remove Confederate statues on display in the halls of Congress, bringing the raging debate over Civil War symbols across the South to Capitol Hill. Nearly 10 Confederate-era figures are memorialized in the U.S. Capitol, each sponsored by a state. Mississippi displays Jefferson Davis, the president of the Confederacy, in Statuary Hall, for example. "There is no room for celebrating the violent bigotry of the men of the Confederacy in the hallowed halls of the United States Capitol or in places of honor across the country," House Minority Leader Pelosi, D-Calif., said Thursday. But even as numerous cities consider taking down monuments in the wake of the Charlottesville violence at a white supremacist rally, the Democrat-led effort on Capitol Hill faces slim chances of success.
The American Civil War sputtered to its brutal finish more than 150 years ago, with the United States battered but still united. Yet in some ways we're still fighting it, or at least fighting over how we remember it. The latest front: Statues in the U.S. Capitol building provided by the states -- two from each -- that include some men who led or fought in the rebellion on behalf of Southern slavery. That visitors from other countries, and children from our own, can find in such an exalted place monuments to the president, vice president and commanding general of the would-be Confederate States of America is more than simply embarrassing. It's a subtle but significant repudiation of what America stands for.
WASHINGTON – House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi called Thursday for the removal of Confederate statues from the U.S. Capitol as the contentious debate over the appropriateness of such memorials moved to the halls of Congress. Pelosi asked Speaker Paul Ryan to join Democrats in supporting legislation to remove the Confederate statues. "If Republicans are serious about rejecting white supremacy, I call upon Speaker Ryan to join Democrats to remove the Confederate statues from the Capitol immediately." Each state is allowed to place two statues in the Capitol's National Statuary Hall.
The president lauds GOP rival to Arizona's Sen. Flake and attacks Sen. Graham Trump laments removal of Confederate monuments as loss to history, culture White House strategist Stephen Bannon unloads in unsolicited call to liberal writer Trump plans Arizona rally, his first in West, but mayor says don't come Trump plans Arizona rally, his first in West, but mayor says don't come The fight over Confederate statues is coming to the U.S. Capitol. The marbled halls have long been home to memorials for leaders of the Confederacy, and opposition to them has flared from time to time. But now, in the aftermath of deadly violence in Charlottesville, Va., and President Trump's defense of what many see as nods to the country's segregated and slave-holding past, some lawmakers want them out. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-San Francisco) on Thursday called on Speaker Paul D. Ryan (R-Wis.) to start the process for their removal. "The Confederate statues in the halls of Congress have always been reprehensible," said Pelosi.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi has ramped up calls to remove "reprehensible" Confederate statues from the halls of Congress -- but left unsaid in her public denunciations is that her father helped dedicate such a statue decades ago while mayor of Baltimore. It was May 2, 1948, when, according to a Baltimore Sun article from that day, "3,000" looked on as then-Governor William Preston Lane Jr. and Pelosi's father, the late Thomas D'Alesandro Jr., spoke at the dedication of a monument to honor Confederate generals Robert E. Lee and Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson. The article said Lane delivered a speech, and Mayor D'Alesandro "accepted" the memorial. "Today, with our nation beset by subversive groups and propaganda which seeks to destroy our national unity, we can look for inspiration to the lives of Lee and Jackson to remind us to be resolute and determined in preserving our sacred institutions," D'Alesandro said in his dedication. "We must remain steadfast in our determination to preserve freedom, not only for ourselves, but for the other liberty-loving nations who are striving to preserve their national unity as free nations."