Historical Statues in the United States Capitol, Commission for; removal of Robert E. Lee statue. (HB181)

Introduced By

Del. Mark Levine (D-Alexandria) with support from co-patrons Del. Kaye Kory (D-Falls Church), and Del. Ibraheem Samirah (D-Herndon)


Passed Committee
Passed House
Passed Senate
Signed by Governor
Became Law


Commission for Historical Statues in the United States Capitol; removal of Robert E. Lee statue from National Statuary Hall Collection. Creates the Commission for Historical Statues in the United States Capitol to provide for the removal of the Robert E. Lee statue in the National Statuary Hall Collection at the United States Capitol and to recommend to the General Assembly as a replacement a statue of a prominent Virginia citizen of historic renown or renowned for distinguished civil or military service to be commemorated in the National Statuary Hall Collection. The Commission will consist of six members appointed as follows: one member of the House of Delegates appointed by the Speaker of the House of Delegates; one member of the Senate appointed by the Senate Committee on Rules; two nonlegislative citizen members who are Virginia or American historians appointed by the Governor; one nonlegislative citizen member appointed upon the vote of the Commission members appointed by the Speaker, the Senate Committee on Rules, and the Governor; and the Director of the Department of Historic Resources, who serves ex officio with nonvoting privileges. The Department of Historic Resources will provide staff support to the Commission. The Commission will also be required to (i) select a sculptor for the new statue, with preference given to a sculptor from Virginia; (ii) estimate the costs associated with the replacement of the Robert E. Lee statue, including costs related to construction and placement of the new statue, for the removal and transfer of the Robert E. Lee statue, and for any unveiling ceremony of the new statue; and (iii) recommend to the General Assembly a suitable state, local, or private nonprofit history museum in the Commonwealth for placement of the Robert E. Lee statue. The bill requires the Commission to hold at least one public hearing prior to making any recommendation to the General Assembly on a new statue and requires the costs of the Commission's work to be borne by the Commission from such private funds as are collected by the Commission and general funds as are appropriated by the General Assembly. This bill was incorporated into HB 1406. Read the Bill »


Bill Has Failed


12/26/2019Prefiled and ordered printed; offered 01/08/20 20101011D
12/26/2019Referred to Committee on Rules
01/21/2020Impact statement from DPB (HB181)
01/27/2020Assigned Rules sub: Studies
02/03/2020Subcommittee recommends incorporating (HB1406-Ward)
02/11/2020Left in Rules


Mike writes:

The problem with cancel culture is that it ignores how even bad history is still important history. The statue has relevance, which offers discussion and lessons everyone should learn.

To remove it would simply be ignorant political correctness run amuck that appeals to emotion rather than the importance of education.