WASHINGTON – The GOP-led Armed Services Committee approved a motion requiring the Pentagon to rename military bases and assets named after Confederate leaders – defying President Trump, who warned them not to support the Elizabeth Warren-introduced measure.
The committee on Wednesday approved an amendment to the annual defense bill that would establish a commission to rename all Pentagon assets – including ships, planes, buildings, military bases and equipment – that bear the name of Confederate generals within the next three years, Roll Call reported.
Cities across America have begun removing statues honoring Confederate leaders as the nation engages in an emotional conversation about race and civil rights in the wake of George Floyd’s death at the hands of a white police officer.
Aboard Air Force One on his way to Dallas Thursday afternoon, President Trump tweeted his disapproval of the move from Warren, a member of the committee and former Democratic presidential candidate, telling Republicans not to “fall for” it.
“Seriously failed presidential candidate, Senator Elizabeth“ Pocahontas ”Warren, just introduced an Amendment on the renaming of many of our legendary Military Bases from which we trained to WIN two World Wars. Hopefully our great Republican Senators fall for this! ” Trump wrote.
The amendment would apply to military bases like Fort Bragg in North Carolina and Fort Benning in Georgia, which are named after the Confederate Gens. Braxton Bragg and Henry Lewis Benning.
White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany, repeating the president’s tweets on the subject Wednesday, said Trump would in no way support the renaming of military bases – setting up a showdown between the president and Capitol Hill and potentially endangering the defense budget.
“The president will not be signing legislation that renames America’s forts,” McEnany told reporters.
Fort Bragg, for example, is just one of the largest military installations. We think home to the tens of thousands of brave American soldiers, and when you think of Fort Bragg, we think of the brave soldiers deployed from there, ”she continued.
Trump earlier came out against the idea in a series of tweets, saying they are part of the “Great American Heritage.”
Warren explained her decision to introduce the motion in a Tuesday tweet, writing: “Last long time to end the tribute to white supremacy on our military installations.”