Schumer Says He Opposes Removal Of Columbus Statues

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — There is a national drive to remove statues of Christopher Columbus, but U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) does not agree with the idea.

As WCBS 880’s Mike Sugerman reported, some historians have attacked Columbus’ treatment of native people and his participation in the slave trade.

Mayor Bill de Blasio has named a Mayoral Advisory Commission on City Art, Monuments and Markers to offer opinions on issues surrounding public art, monuments and markers on city-owned property. The group will help decide the fate of the statue of Christopher Columbus in Columbus Circle.

But Schumer said, “I think you know no one’s perfect and he discovered America.”

He called Columbus an icon. Public Advocate Letitia James also said she is against taking down the statue.

De Blasio last week refused to say whether he thinks the statue of Christopher Columbus should stay or be removed, instead saying he’s interested in what the commission finds.

“I think the right way to handle all the issues that have been brought up is it to have a commission that looks at all of these matters; comes up with, as best as possible, a universal standard for how we move going forward,” de Blasio said during a Democratic mayoral primary debate last week.

De Blasio’s Democratic opponent Sal Albanese said he thinks the statue should remain, as does Republican candidate for mayor Nicole Malliotakis.

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