House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi on Thursday said she supports removing Confederate statues from the U.S. Capitol and called on Speaker Paul D. Ryan to join the push to remove them “immediately.”
“The Confederate statues in the halls of Congress have always been reprehensible,” Mrs. Pelosi said in a statement.
“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,” the California Democrat said.
“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,” she said.
Mrs. Pelosi’s call came after Sen. Cory Booker, New Jersey Democrat, announced plans to introduce legislation to remove the Confederate statues from the Capitol.
It also came after President Trump lamented the push in areas across the country to remove some of the statues from public spaces, saying such moves are ripping apart U.S. history and culture.
The push has gotten renewed interest the wake of the violent protests last weekend in Charlottesville, Virginia, arising in part from white supremacists gathering to protest the removal of a statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee.
“Sad to see the history and culture of our great country being ripped apart with the removal of our beautiful statues and monuments,” Mr. Trump tweeted Thursday. “You … can’t change history, but you can learn from it.”