Harriet Tubman $20 bill: Treasury set to review delay in bill featuring emancipator’s portrait.
Back in 2016, the Treasury Department announced the Harriet Tubman bill. Her portrait would replace President Andrew Jackson’s on the $20 bill. Tubman would be the first woman after Martha Washington to appear on American currency.
However, last month the Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin pushed the redesign from 2020 to 2028. The change prompted an investigation into why the emancipator’s note is delayed. Senator Chuck Schumer called for the investigation last week.
He said, “The motivation for the Trump administration’s decision to delay the release of the new note has not been credibly explained, and the inspector general’s review must get to the bottom of this.”
Additionally, he asked for “the involvement of other participants in the interagency process related to the redesign – including the Secret Service, Federal Reserve, and the White House – to ensure that political considerations have not been allowed to infect the process for designing American currency.”
Inspector General Rich Delmar wrote a letter to Sen. Schumer on Monday. He explained the inquiry into the Bureau of Engraving and Printing’s project management processes. He wrote, “As part of this work, we will interview the stakeholders involved in the new note design process.”
Delmar said the review will take 10 months. It will include officials from the Treasury, BEP, the Board of Governors of the FRS and Secreat Service. Delmar wrote, “If, in the course of our audit work, we discover indications of the employee misconduct or other matters that warrant a referral to our Office of Investigations, we will do so expeditiously.”
Read the full letter here:
However, a Treasury spokesperson said the delay in Tubman’s bill was not political at all.
Harriet Tubman was born in 1820. She escaped slavery in 1849 and became a conductor on the Underground Railroad. She helped saved hundreds of families and slaves as they escaped from plantations. Additionally, she helped them locate into safe houses. She also helped the Union Army during the Civil War as a spy.
The decision to put her on the $20 bill was announced was received favorably all around. Women on 20s wrote on their website, “Not only did she devote her life to racial equality, she fought for women’s rights alongside the nation’s leading suffragists.”
Before becoming the POTUS, President Trump was not in agreement with the change. He said “pure political correctness” was behind the push. He added that Jackson “represented somebody really very important to this country.” Additionally, he suggested the $2 bill for Tubman’s portrait.
Tubman passed away in 1913.
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