Not that it matters, but I wanted to voice my full-throated support for this idea:

As Reagan and Grant supporters duke it out over who should be on the $50 bill, not a single legislator has proposed a woman who could represent the 51 percent of the population that hasn’t been seen on our nation’s currency in more than 100 years. What makes this especially surprising is that 92 women currently serve in the House of Representatives and hopefully understand the importance of female representation on our nation’s currency.


In the current climate of partisan politics, representatives from each party could introduce legislation proposing a woman from their own party for the honor. Democratic members of congress might nominate first lady and humanitarian, Eleanor Roosevelt. Republican members of Congress might choose Maine senator and presidential nominee Margaret Chase Smith.

I’ve long been an advocate of including significant cultural figures and non-presidential political actors on our currency. To mention a few, Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Martin Luther King Jr. both had a tremendous impact on the United States, and you can easily make the case that they are far more important to our modern conception of “American-ness” than Benjamin Franklin (who adorns the $100 bill) or Andrew Jackson (whose face dominates the $20 bill). Beyond that, the United States looks far different than it did a hundred years ago, or even fifty years ago. I, for one, would like to see our currency reflect at least some of that diversity.

* And yes, I know this song has nothing to do with the post. Still, it’s awesome.

Jamelle Bouie

Jamelle Bouie

1 Comment