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Now Woodrow Wilson's Desk Is Demoted

It won't be used by New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy anymore
By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 30, 2020 1:30 PM CDT

(Newser) – First Woodrow Wilson's name got kicked to the curb. Now the same is happening to the former president's desk. New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy on Monday said he is no longer using a desk that was once owned by the 28th president and still bears his name on a gold-colored plaque (see it here). The move was spurred by flak Murphy caught after he tweeted a photo that showed him at his desk silently honoring George Floyd. CNN notes that Wilson—who was himself New Jersey's governor from 1911 to 1913 and then occupied the White House through 1921—was a defender of slavery (calling slaves "happy and well-cared for") and segregation ("a benefit," in his view).

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The AP reports that Murphy said he hadn't considered his use of the desk, which has been used by his predecessors, but did take action in response to the criticism. "As soon as I could get a replacement, which was not as easy as I thought, I got one and I think that was the right thing to do," he said Monday, noting "Woodrow Wilson and his legacy is being swept up in [America's reckoning] as it should be." (Read more Woodrow Wilson stories.)

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