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Duval voters want to keep Confederate statues, per poll

As Jacksonville City Council President Anna Borsch considers potentially moving Confederate monuments, a new poll from the University of North Florida suggests little enthusiasm among Duval residents for relocating the relics.

Removal is underwater: 38 percent of registered voters want them gone, while 53 percent of registered voters want the monuments to remain.

Brosche, a Republican running for re-election in 2019, would likely face pushback from GOP voters; 83 percent oppose removal.

Of Democrats, meanwhile, 56 percent want the statues gone.

The racial split on statues is likewise stark: 68 percent of white voters want the statues to stay where they are, while 62 percent of black voters want the statues moved.

The poll was conducted via live dial to 512 registered Duval County voters between Oct. 2 and Oct. 4.

Duval County has a number of monuments on city property.

The inventory provided by the Parks Department revealed three monuments, put in place between 1898 and 1926; and eight historic markers.

The monuments include the Confederate Monument in Hemming Park, the ‘Monument to the Women of the Southland’ in Confederate Park in Springfield, and a Confederate Memorial Services grandstand at the Old City Cemetery.

The historical markers are on the Northbank Riverwalk, Walter Jones Park in Mandarin, the Old City Cemetery, the Prime Osborn Convention Center, Lenox Ave. near Cedar Creek (memorializing a “skirmish”), Confederate Park, and Camp Milton Historic Preserve.

Brosche characterizes public sentiment on these monuments as fairly evenly split, and she addressed the state of the statues at a Wednesday luncheon.

Notably: she is cool on a referendum on removal.

“It’s about what they mean to the entire community, not just one section of the community,” Brosche said Wednesday, adding that she doesn’t “personally favor” a referendum.

“I’ve studied what it is we’ve taken to the voters in the past, and I personally have a hard time putting a vote to the majority, to decide [for the minority],” Brosche said, occasioning murmurs from the crowd.

Written By

A.G. Gancarski has been a working journalist for over two decades. Gancarski has been a correspondent for FloridaPolitics.com since 2014. In 2018, he was a finalist for an Association of Alternative Newsweeklies "best political column." He can be reached at a.g.gancarski@gmail.com.

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