Leaders Content to Leave Confederate Statues in US Capitol Despite Flag Uproar

Nearly a dozen statues of Confederate leaders and associates appear.

— -- Despite a growing chorus of calls to remove the Confederate battle flag from the South Carolina Capitol and the Mississippi flag, nearly a dozen statues of Confederate leaders and those associated with the movement are still standing in the U.S. Capitol building. And several Southern lawmakers say they’re content to keep it that way –- at least for now.

Eleven of the 100 statues of "notable citizens" sent to Washington from all 50 states are figures associated with the Confederacy, including both from South Carolina, which depict John Calhoun, a vocal antebellum defender of slavery, and Wade Hampton, a Confederate Cavalry officer with ties to postwar white supremacists.

Other states with statues of figures associated with the Confederacy include North Carolina, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi, Virginia and Alabama.

South Carolina's senators, who both support the flag's removal, said focus should remain on the flag and the families of the Charleston shooting victims.

One South Carolina state legislator who plans to introduce a bill to remove the flag in Columbia said he had not considered the statues, but is worried about losing momentum on the flag initiative.

Much like the flags, a statue at the U.S. Capitol can be removed and replaced by a resolution from a state’s legislature and approved by its governor. But some suggested the historical figures would be harder to part with.

One figure facing scrutiny is Jefferson Davis, the Confederacy’s only president.

While his statue has stood in the Capitol since 1931, students at the University of Texas are calling for it to be removed from the University of Texas at Austin campus, according to the Texas Tribune.

"Maybe a better place for that would be the Kentucky history museum," he said, adding that Davis was only born in Kentucky, being mostly identified with Mississippi

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