They appear to be the same size as the current Hub statues that have existed now for decades, I believe. I thing this is a low-key way of eliminating the Br'er Rabbit statue without drawing attention to its removal.
I doubt that. Disney could just remove that overnight at some point and most people wouldn't notice.
Beyond that, the people that would care have to know that statue is almost certainly going to disappear at some point. I don't think Disney is worried about any backlash.