GOP senator says it's time to stop naming military bases after Confederate generals

GOP senator says it's time to stop naming military bases after Confederate generals
© Bonnie Cash

Sen. James LankfordJames Paul LankfordSenate GOP opens door to smaller coronavirus deal as talks lag Ballooning Fed balance sheet sparks GOP concerns  The Hill's Coronavirus Report: Rep. Lauren Underwood says Americans face economic crisis if Senate fails to act on unemployment benefits extension; US surpasses 4 million cases, 1,000+ deaths for third straight day MORE (R-Okla.) said Sunday that it’s time to stop naming military bases after Confederate generals.

The Oklahoma senator said on ABC’s “This Week” that he thinks there are “lots of great” modern leaders to honor instead of Confederate generals. 

He added that lawmakers should be able to examine “where did the name come from, what do we need to be able to take a serious look at it, and then to be able to transition” to a different name. 

“There are lots of great leaders, military leaders, that are around the country that are modern leaders that we can continue to be able to honor and continue to be able to put names forward,” he told host George StephanopoulosGeorge Robert StephanopoulosMeadows defends US COVID-19 testing amid criticism Meadows says White House is 'hopeful' it can announce new coronavirus therapies 'in the coming days' Mary Trump's book sells 950,000 copies in preorders alone MORE.

 

President Trump last week rejected the idea of renaming U.S. Army bases that are named after Confederate leaders days after Pentagon officials had signaled the Army was willing to discuss the option. 

Lankford said naming bases is similar to naming schools.

“You want those children in that school to be able to learn” about the person the building is named after, he said. 

“You would have that on a military base as well,” he said. “So, if you have a military base that is named after someone that actually rebelled against the United States government, then you would want to be able to go back and look at that name. That should be a pretty basic principle.”

The U.S. Navy and Marines both announced bans of public displays of the Confederate flag on their bases this month.