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Nathan Bedford Forrest bust to remain in Capitol for now

Resolution to remove the monument fails
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Posted at 8:38 PM, Jun 09, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-10 14:41:37-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — A resolution to remove a bust of Nathan Bedford Forrest from the Tennessee Capitol failed in Naming, Designating, & Private Acts Committee.

It failed in a vote of 5-11 Tuesday. Representatives Beck, Casada, Clemmons, Hodges and Mitchell voted in favor of removing the monument. Representatives Carr, Dunn, Eldridge, Griffey, Holt, Lynn, Ragan, Rudd, Sexton J, Sherrell and Sparks voted against it.

The bust of the former Confederate general and Ku Klux Klan leader, which is displayed prominently has been the center of controversy for years. Calls for the removal of it and other confederate monuments were reignited after the death of George Floyd, which prompted protests and demands of justice.

However, earlier in the day, legislation that would stop designating July 13 as Nathan Bedford Forrest day advanced in the House, even though a conflicting version is also making its way in the Senate.

Republican members echoed previous stances that they did not want to “erase history” while their fellow black colleagues stressed that the state’s continued honoring of Forrest remains deeply painful.

*Editor's Note: The Associated Press contributed to this article.