A Trump presidency could mean we never get those epic $20 bills featuring Harriet Tubman

Harriet Tubman, the sword-wielding, gun-toting spy and freedom fighter who led dozens of slaves to freedom in the north after escaping from slavery herself is set to become the first black woman to be featured on American currency—specifically, the $20 bill.

According to a new report from TIME, however, the impending inauguration of President-elect Donald Trump and the administrative changes that will come along with it have some within the Department of the Treasury concerned about the future of the new legal tender.

Back in April, long before he became the Republican frontrunner for this year's election, Trump expressed his apprehension for the Treasury's plans to remove Andrew Jackson, a man made wildly wealthy thanks to his ownership of some 300 slaves, from the $20 bill in favor of Tubman as mere "political correctness."


"Well, Andrew Jackson had a great history, and I think it's very rough when you take somebody off the bill," Trump said. "I think Harriet Tubman is fantastic, but I would love to leave Andrew Jackson or see if we can maybe come up with another denomination."

Trump went on to run with a suggestion from then political rival and now cabinet appointee Ben Carson that the Treasury bring the $2 bill out of retirement and feature Tubman's likeness there instead.

One of the many ideas artists on social media have had for a $20 bill featuring Tubman.

Now, officials within the Department of Treasury are suggesting that current Treasury Secretary Jack Lew is considering releasing the finalized artwork for the new $20 bill with Tubman in an effort to sway incoming Treasury Secretary (and former Goldman Sachs partner) Steven Mnuchin to continue the process set in motion earlier this year.


The problem with that tactic, an official who asked to remain anonymous explained to TIME, is that releasing the artwork for the bill this early could give counterfeiters the opportunity to begin producing fake bills before all of the new bills' security measures have been finalized and put into production.

“People will take what you put out there and think that that’s final and that’s not necessarily the case," the official said. "We’re not far enough along in Ihe process where we can unveil or release any type of design element at this point in time.”

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