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Harry S. Truman statue should be installed in U.S. Capitol


Harry S. Truman had to be happy to leave behind the White House that he sometimes referred to as his “jail.” Unpopular and weary from the Korean War, Missouri’s sole president declined to run for re-election in 1952 and came back home to Independence, where he would live out his final two decades.

Today there is a renewed push to return Truman to Washington, D.C. — this time permanently, in the form of a statue to be installed in the U.S. Capitol’s National Statuary Hall. It would join the existing figure of Thomas Hart Benton (the 19th century abolitionist statesman, not the famed Missouri painter of the same name) and take the place of Union General Francis Preston Blair. Both sculptures date to 1899.

U.S. Rep. Emanuel Cleaver of Missouri has led the campaign to honor Truman in the hall since 2015. In June, U.S. Sens. Roy Blunt and Claire McCaskill joined Cleaver in hosting a Washington reception to close the gap on the fundraising goal of $350,000 needed to design and create the statue.


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