For those following the saga of the $10 and $20 bills, a surprise new twist emerged on Wednesday. First reported by Politico, the Treasury department, under intense pressure from a variety of interest groups, will announce that Alexander Hamilton will retain his spot on the front of the $10 bill and Andrew Jackson, whose reputation has taken a beating in recent months, will get the boot from the $20 bill. Replacing Jackson on the $20 bill will be none other than famed Civil War-era abolitionist Harriet Tubman, making her the first woman to appear on U.S. paper currency in 100 years. The Treasury Department later confirmed the decision to NBC News.
Response to the news was met with satisfaction from at least one U.S. lawmaker, Senator Jeanne Shaheen of New Hampshire, who lauded the decision as “great news” and adding, “Tubman on $20 is the right call. The redesign needs to happen as soon as possible. Women have waited long enough.” But, despite the surprise twist, the waiting will go on for at least another 14 years. The earliest the $20 bill can be overhauled will be the year 2030. Susan Ades Stone, executive director of Women On 20s, one of the most vocal advocates for putting a woman on U.S. currency, denounced the decision in a statement due to the long wait before the change is realized. “We see today’s announcement as only a vague commitment and a continuation of the now familiar message that women have to settle for less and wait for their fair share,” Stone said, according to The Huffington Post.
The about-face, so to speak, would seem to be inspired by an essay written by Federal Reserve Chair Ben Bernanke last June, when he argued for getting rid of Jackson and keeping Hamilton front and center on the ten-spot.
Read the full story at Politico.