Bill to fix, reinstall toppled Christopher Columbus statue moves to Senate floor

Christopher Columbus statue is taken down outside the Minnesota State Capitol. (FOX 9)

Some lawmakers are calling for the return of the Christopher Columbus statue that protestors toppled outside the Minnesota State Capitol last summer.

Tuesday, the Senate State Government Committee approved legislation ordering the Walz administration to repair and reinstall the statue.

Once a widely celebrated explorer credited with "discovering America," Columbus' legacy has grown controversial as more attention has been paid to the atrocities Columbus and his followers committed after coming to the New World. 

Mike Forcia, an organizer with the American Indian Movement, led a group of more than 100 protesters on the state Capitol grounds June 10. Protesters tied two ropes around Columbus's bronze neck, started tugging, and brought the statue crashing to the ground.

Forcia was the only person charged in connection to the protest. Through a plea deal, the charge was suspended and he was ordered to complete 100 hours of community service.

The damage is estimated at $154,000. 

The bill now heads to the Senate floor.