Two Republicans from Minnesota split with the majority of their party Tuesday and voted in favor of a bill to remove Confederate statues from the U.S. Capitol.
Reps. Tom Emmer and Pete Stauber joined 67 Republicans in supporting a bill that, if passed in the Senate, will result in the removal of all Confederate statues from the Capitol building. The majority of Republicans, 120, voted against the legislation, including Minnesota Reps. Jim Hagedorn and Michelle Fischbach.
The bill, sponsored by House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, also calls for replacing a bust of former Chief Justice Roger Brooke Taney with a bust of former Associate Justice Thurgood Marshall. Taney wrote the majority opinion in the Dred Scott ruling, which declared that black people could not be citizens.
Hoyer said the bill sends “a message to the American people that symbols of slavery, segregation, and sedition are not welcome in the halls of Congress.”
“I am pleased to see our bill to remove hate pass in the House,” he added. “Symbols of slavery and segregation denigrate our Capitol and have no place here. Individuals who worked to enshrine or perpetuate the bondage of African Americans, or prevent them from achieving full and equal rights, are not worthy of being honored in our country.”
Every Democratic representative voted in favor of the bill, which passed in a vote of 285-120. The House passed identical legislation last year, but it was blocked by the GOP-controlled Senate.