Elijah Cummings reintroduces legislation to put Harriet Tubman on $20 bill | TribLIVE.com

Elijah Cummings reintroduces legislation to put Harriet Tubman on $20 bill

Rep. Elijah E. Cummings, D- Md., the chairman of the Committee on Oversight and Reform, presides over the last hour of testimony by Michael Cohen, President Trump’s former personal lawyer, on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Feb. 27, 2019.

It’s still not clear whose face will be on the $20 bill in 2020.

Last month, a bipartisan pair of lawmakers, Elijah Cummings, a Maryland Democrat, and John Katko, a New York Republican, reintroduced legislation to require the Treasury Department to put abolitionist Harriet Tubman on the $20 bill. Tubman would replace President Andrew Jackson’s portrait.

“Too often, our nation does not do enough to honor the contributions of women in American history, especially women of color. Placing Harriet Tubman on our U.S. currency would be a fitting tribute to a woman who fought to make the values enshrined in our Constitution a reality for all Americans,” Cummings said in a statement.

If approved, Tubman would be the first African-American pictured on the face of U.S. currency.

Asked Wednesday whether the Treasury Department would be putting Harriet Tubman’s face on the bill by 2020, a spokeswoman referred to comments made by Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin at the Washington Economic Club in January 2018, in which he said, “We haven’t made any decisions.”

The spokeswoman said Mnuchin’s position remains the same, and added “that the primary focus when changing the currency is on developing new security features to prevent counterfeiting.”

Cummings and Katko first introduced the Harriet Tubman Tribute Act in 2017 after Mnuchin declined to commit to the Tubman $20 bill in a 2017 interview on CNBC.

“Harriet Tubman is a hero who bravely led countless Americans to freedom and opportunity, courageously fought for her country,” Katko said in a statement. “I’m proud to once again introduce legislation with Representative Cummings to honor the life of Harriet Tubman and her incredible contributions to this great nation.”

In 2016, the Obama administration announced a redesign of the $20 bill that included an image of Tubman, the Dorchester County, Maryland, native who ferried dozens of slaves to freedom.

Jack Lew, Mnuchin’s predecessor, announced in 2016 that Tubman would be featured on a new $20 bill to be unveiled in 2020, the 100th anniversary of the year women received the right to vote. At the time, then-candidate Donald Trump described the announcement as “pure political correctness.”

President Trump has repeatedly praised Jackson, who was president from 1829 to 1837. Jackson, Trump said last year, “had a history of tremendous success for the country” and “represented somebody really that was very important to this country.”

Trump said he would “love to see another denomination” for Tubman.

Categories: News | World
TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.