- The Washington Times - Thursday, June 23, 2016

The House Rules Committee decided Tuesday evening against voting on an amendment that would have prevented abolitionist Harriet Tubman from appearing on the $20 bill.

Rep. Steve King, Iowa Republican, proposed a measure that would have barred the U.S. Treasury Department from spending any money on currency redesign, effectively stalling plans to put a portrait of Underground Railroad architect on the $20 bill.

President Andrew Jackson has graced the front of the denomination since 1928, but the Treasury announced in April that it plans on replacing his likeness with an image of Tubman by 2020.

“It’s not about Harriet Tubman, it’s about keeping the picture on the $20,” the congressman said Tuesday, according to Politico. “Y’know? Why would you want to change that? I am a conservative, I like to keep what we have.”

“Here’s what’s really happening: This is liberal activism on the part of the president that’s trying to identify people by categories, and he’s divided us on the lines of groups. … This is a divisive proposal on the part of the president, and mine’s unifying. It says just don’t change anything,” Mr. King said.

President Obama, the congressman added, is “going to do everything he can think of to upset this society and this civilization” before his term expires in January, Politico reported.

During Tuesday evening’s committee meaning, however, lawmakers determined the amendment was not in compliance with House rules and refused to bring it to a vote, much to the delight of Iowan Democrats who opposed their colleague’s proposal.

“Iowans have four representatives in the United States House of Representatives, and unfortunately one of them seems to maintain a laser focus on where his next headline-grabbing piece of stunt legislation will come from,” said Kim Weaver, a Democrat who intends on challenging the GOP incumbent in November’s election.

“What will this amendment do for residents of Iowa’s 4th District? Nothing. How will it make the lives of his constituents better? It won’t. And what chance does this meaningless and mean-spirited gesture have of actually passing? Just like most measures introduced by Steve King, none,” she told the Des Moines Register.

“For King, a Congressman who has based his entire career on hate speech and xenophobic policies, to accuse President Obama of dividing the country is the definition of hypocrisy. The truth is Rep. King is more interested in grabbing headlines than in improving the quality of life for Iowans in the 4th district,” Iowa Democratic Party Chair Andy McGuire told CNN.

Speaking to CNN after his proposal was rejected, Mr. King said of Tubman: “As much as she did, she didn’t change the course of history.”

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