Last year, President Obama Treasury Department announced plans to remove Andrew Jackson from the $20 bill and replace him with an image of abolitionist Harriet Tubman. During an interview with CNBC, Donald Trump’s Treasury Secretary, Steve Mnuchin, said that change might not happen. Mnuchin said that the Treasury normally changes bills to implement anti-counterfeit measures which are what he would be focusing on when addressing redesigns of bills.
‘The No. 1 issue why we change the currency is to stop counterfeiting. So the issues of what we change will be primarily related to what we need to do for security purposes. I’ve received classified briefings on that. And that’s what I’m focused on for the most part.
People have been on the bills for a long period of time. And this is something we will consider. Right now, we’ve got a lot more important issues to focus on.’
During the campaign, Trump said that he was open to putting Tubman on a bill, but didn’t want to replace Jackson on the twenty.
‘I think Harriet Tubman is fantastic. I would love to leave Andrew Jackson and see if we can maybe come up with another denomination. Maybe we do the $2 bill or we do another bill.
I don’t like seeing it. Yes, I think it’s pure political correctness. Been on the bill [Jackson] for many, many years. And, you know, really represented somebody that really was very important to this country.’
Trump has long been an admirer of Andrew Jackson hanging his portrait in the Oval Office and frequently referencing him in statements. While Jackson was once held up as one of the country’s greatest presidents, his history has been reevaluated in recent decades. His support of slavery and violence against Native Americans has led many historians to reconsider their opinion of Jackson.
In some ways, Trump’s admiration of Jackson makes sense as both were wealthy men who rose to power on waves of populism. Both spoke out against the corruption in politics but were less likely to criticize business owners and other powerful members of society.
For more information, CNBC’s interview can be seen below.
Featured image via Getty Images.