Black Caucus: Renaming Confederate bases must be part of final defense bill

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The Congressional Black Caucus said Monday that Congress must impose a three-year deadline on the Defense Department to strip the names of figures from the Confederacy from military property as part of this year’s annual defense policy bill.

The line in the sand comes as the House and Senate are negotiating on a final compromise version of the legislation.

Both chambers included language calling for a renaming in their earlier versions, but President Trump has threatened a veto over the attempt, and key Republicans have signaled they don’t want the bill to get squelched because of that fight.

CBC lawmakers on Monday said they want to see the fight, and suggested Congress should be able to override a Trump veto.

Indeed, the House and Senate each passed their earlier versions of the defense bill with veto-proof majorities.

“There are countless American heroes that provide the positive, inclusive inspiration required by memorial designations; men and women who served their country loyally and who uphold our values,” said CBC Chair Karen Bass. “It’s time we honor them, not traitors who sought to tear apart our country.”

The CBC said the bill must require the renaming to be completed within three years.

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