Senate votes to bar local decisions on Confederate monuments

virginia general assemblyThe Senate voted Monday to approve Franklin Republican Del. Charles Poindexter’s HB 587, which would strip localities of authority to make decisions about whether to remove or dismantle Confederate monuments within their boundaries. An existing law that bars localities from altering or removing war monuments and memorials applies only to those constructed after 1998.

Said Caucus Chair Sen. Donald McEachin (D – Henrico), “Our view of the past sometimes changes over time and we should leave communities the opportunities to make decisions accordingly. I am disappointed that my Republican colleagues do not have faith in Virginians to make good decisions.”

Said Sen. Barbara Favola (D – Arlington), “How we remember the past is always a delicate question — especially now, when communities are discussing whether to move, alter, or remove Confederate symbols. I’m disappointed that my Republican colleagues would seek to end that needed and constructive dialogue.”

Said Sen. Mamie Locke (D – Hampton), “Politicians in Richmond should not be telling communities how to remember the past. The shootings in South Carolina last year sparked an overdue conversation about the future of Confederate monuments. That conversation badly needs to continue — but this bill seeks to end it. Virginians deserve far better.”

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