House

House rebuffs GOP lawmaker's effort to remove references to Democrats in Capitol

The House on Tuesday tabled a resolution offered by conservative Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-Texas) calling on Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) to remove any references in the lower chamber to political parties that supported slavery or the Confederacy, including the Democratic Party.

The chamber tabled the measure in a 223-176 vote. Gohmert offered the resolution after the Democratic-controlled House voted in July to remove statues of people who served the Confederacy or otherwise worked to defend slavery from the Capitol.

Critics of removing the Confederate statues, including Gohmert, argued that lawmakers were attempting to erase history by doing away with the symbols.

"Due to parliamentary issues, I am re-introducing my Privileged Resolution and urging my Democratic colleagues to rid the House wing of the U.S. Capitol of any item that names, symbolizes or mentions their own political party because of its past support for slavery and the Confederacy," Gohmert said in a statement reintroducing the resolution on Thursday.

"Though I personally believe we need to learn from history including the good, the bad and the ugly, the Democratic Party has initiated this purging but needs assistance to avoid unparalleled hypocrisy. So, it is time for Democrats to account for, be washed of, and rid our Capitol of the sins of their party's past."

The resolution - which was co-sponsored by GOP Reps. Andy Biggs (Ariz.), Jody Hice (Ga.), Randy Weber (Texas), Andy Harris (Md.), Rick Crawford (Ark.), and Ralph Norman (S.C.) - points to the Democratic Party supporting the institution of slavery during the time of the Civil War, former President Woodrow Wilson's support of segregation, the enactment of Jim Crow Laws and Sen. Robert Byrd's (D-W.Va.) involvement with the Ku Klux Klan.

The vote to remove 11 Confederate statues from the Capitol over the summer came as demonstrations against racial injustice took place across the country following the death of George Floyd, an unarmed Black man who died in Minneapolis police custody.

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