On 22nd May, the Treasury Secretary announced that designs for new $20 banknotes will not be released until 2028. It is not sure if the new notes will feature Harriet Tubman either. Officials stated that the new designs are being introduced to tackle the issue of counterfeiting. They also mentioned that new $10 and 50 banknotes will be released before 2028.
Advanced Counterfeit Deterrence (ACD) Committee had decided to redesign the $10 note first in 2013 by analysing factors like usability, vulnerability to counterfeiting etc. This was when the "Women on 20s" campaign became popular on social media.
The campaign’s objective was to feature an important American woman on the $20 bill before the 100th anniversary of the ratification of the 19th Amendment to the US Constitution, which gave women the right to vote. Online voting was organised and the African-American abolitionist and civil rights activist Harriet Tubman won by a big margin.
The Obama Administration was forced to take a decision due to the effective campaign and it was announced that new $20 notes will be released featuring a portrait of Tubman. Donald Trump has never been keen on having Tubman’s picture on banknotes ever since he became a candidate for the 2016 elections. He also praised the works of the 7th President of the US, Andrew Jackson, whose portrait is featured currently on the $20 notes.
A bill was introduced on 26th March 2019, according to which, new $20 notes featuring Harriet Tubman’s portrait the obverse side should be released after 31st December 2020. However, the bill hasn’t received any vote.
Image Courtesy: Wikimedia Commons