MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) – Alabama lawmakers have passed a bill barring changes to Confederate or other long-standing monuments.
The House of Representatives passed a measure 72-29 Thursday that would forbid the alteration or removal of any markers in the state.
Lawmakers argued for about three hours about the intention of the bill.
Critics called the move an offensive effort to preserve monuments with links to the Confederacy and slavery. Proponents say that they want to maintain the history of the state.
A previous version of the bill would have stopped changes from being made to monuments that are more than 20-years-old but lawmakers removed the time stipulation entirely.
Tuscaloosa Republican Sen. Gerald Allen’s bill now moves back to the Senate.