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Bernanke: Keep Hamilton, Kick Jackson Off the $20

He is 'appalled' by plan to dump 'best economic policymaker'
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jun 23, 2015 12:47 AM CDT
Bernanke: Keep Hamilton, Kick Jackson Off the $20
"Hamilton also played a leading role in creating US monetary and financial institutions," Bernanke writes.   (Michelle Siu)

(Newser) – Former Federal Reserve chief-turned-blogger Ben Bernanke has joined those calling for the US Treasury to abandon plans to drop Alexander Hamilton from his featured spot on the $10 bill and to dump Andrew Jackson from the $20 instead. In a post entitled "Say it ain't so, Jack," Bernanke writes that he is "appalled" by Treasury Secretary Jack Lew's plans to replace Hamilton with a woman. Adding a woman is "a fine idea, but it shouldn't come at Hamilton's expense," he writes, calling the first Treasury secretary "without doubt the best and most foresighted economic policymaker in US history."

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By contrast, Jackson, president from 1829 to 1837, was "a man of many unattractive qualities and a poor president," Bernanke writes. Jackson opposed attempts to establish a US central bank. "Given his views on central banking," Bernanke writes, "Jackson would probably be fine with having his image dropped from a Federal Reserve note." On his blog, Bernanke, who stepped down as Fed chair in 2014, was effusive about Hamilton, noting that he helped create the US Constitution and knit 13 fractious states into a single economic unit. (Women on 20s campaigners say they chose the $20 because of Jackson's reputation.)

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