- Associated Press - Wednesday, May 18, 2016

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) - Florida wants the public to help decide who should get to replace Confederate Gen. Edmund Kirby Smith.

The Florida Legislature earlier this year agreed to replace the statue of Smith as one of the state’s two contributions to the U.S. Capitol’s National Statuary Hall Collection.

The Department of State announced Wednesday that it’s going to accept recommendations online and in writing between now and June 10. A panel will submit three finalists to the Legislature ahead of the 2017 session.

Potential nominees must have been either born in Florida or a resident of the state. They also must have died at least 10 years ago.

Florida legislators approved the change despite objections from citizens who have called it an attempt to erase Southern heritage. Backers said they pushed for the change because of Smith’s limited contribution to Florida history.


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