TLP: If We Do This, Does It Mean Mount Rushmore is Off the Table?
Ulysses S. Grant, the drunken Midwestern farmboy who won the Civil War and got himself elected president, could be pushed off the $50 bill in favor of Ronald Reagan, the genially dopey Midwestern lifeguard who won World War II (in Hollywood) and went on to the White House.
That's the dream of a Republican congressman from North Carolina who may not have enough to do.
CNN dispatched its "Political Unit" to ask WTF:
Rep. Patrick McHenry announced that he will introduce a measure that would replace Grant's face with Ronald Reagan's, just in time for the 40th president's 100th birthday next February.
"President Reagan was a modern day statesman, whose presidency transformed our nation's political and economic thinking," McHenry said in a statement. "Through both his domestic and international policies he renewed America's self confidence, defeated the Soviets and taught us that each generation must provide opportunity for the next."
Wait, Reagan defeated the Soviets? I thought the overwhelming demand for Levi's, Enya CDs and a buzz that wasn't fueled by vodka tore down that wall. That and the soft, supple lure of capitalism.
Anyway, McHenry's other bit of supporting evidence (thank you, congressional intern with mad Google skillz) is that Reagan outranks Grant in some survey of historians. Seems that Reagan scored the No. 6 spot, while Grant apparently is still wasted, coming in at the less-than-respectable No. 29 position.
Plus, FDR is on the dime and JFK got the half-dollar, and ...
Dr. John Marszalek, the executive director and managing editor of the Ulysses S. Grant Association (no, really) called Grant a "beacon" of the 19th century and said he deserves to keep his place on the $50 bill.
"His work in battling against inflation and getting the currency on stable footing opened the way for the economy boom of the late 19th century," Marszalek told CNN. "I don't know why he wouldn't be included, except people forget. It's been a long time."
Tell it to Millard Fillmore.