Minnesota Senate Republicans want Columbus statue restored to Capitol campus

March 18, 2021

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) – A Minnesota Senate committee has approved a Republican plan to restore a statue of Christopher Columbus to the Capitol grounds, where it was torn down by demonstrators last summer.

The Senate’s State Government Committee voted Wednesday to repair and return the statue.

Democrats say the idea is a slap in the face to Native Americans.

The full Senate is likely to debate and vote on the measure in the coming weeks.

The measure is sponsored by Republican Sen. Bill Ingebrigtsen, of Alexandria. He says the statue was an initiative of the state’s Italian American community, which at the time often faced discrimination.

Native Americans and others have long taken exception to the now-discredited idea that Columbus discovered America.